In this industry some of the operational and economic characteristics include the quantity, timing and the physical characteristics of the cargo being shipped from one place to another. Cargos physical and commercial characteristics determine the kind of ship type to be used within a specified period of time. For example items such as natural gas or nuclear facilities require specific type of ships due to their features suitable for the job such as speed and crew of the ship. Crude oil is carried in tankers while dry bulky goods are carried in conventional bulk carriers and container goods are carried out in containership.
There are different types of shipping operations that include longterm charters, spot charters operations and liner operations. Long term charters operations require that the ship owner knows the type of cargo to handle as well as the port that should be used for that purpose. Spot charter is an operation where an owner of a ship has a general idea of where the ship should be situated but does not have any knowledge about the type of goods to be used for the port. Liner operation states that the owner of a ship should have knowledge of the port or volumes of cargo to be used but the venue of the operation may change from one period to another.
The shipping companies may approach the business through taking into account several issues such as the purchasing of vessels that are highly flexible, those that serve several markets and reduce the rate of risk from occurring. In addition this may prompt an owner of a ship to use expensive open hold bulk carrier that handles containers as well as dry bulk cargo. Other ship owners may prefer to use ships that are designed for specific purposes, therefore more efficient and incur less operating cost during their operations.
The European Intermodal Transport Operations.
This system is used to create opportunities for its customers by availing the products to the market at the appropriate time and place. It is an information technology tool that is used for ensuring that there is efficient management and management of intermodal door to door transport operations using scientific tools such as logistic and communication systems appropriate for the organization. It was established so that it could help in the reduction of congestion as it was witnessed in the road network. The business men in the shipping industry opted to have the following factors into place so as to carry out their activities profitably .The factors include: higher reliability, lower prices, more flexibility and quality service levels for the customers. It has been observed the Intermodal transport system can offer flexible responses to the supply chain management system within the global production and distribution sectors of the economy. It can be developed by combining top down and bottom up approach that involves the identification of intermodal transport market actors in the market (Lowe, D 2005, p276).
The system is said to solve problems related to financial problems in the road, railway, freight and national railway freight transport systems .For instance the Lorry drivers spend over 10% of operating time in congested road networks. The European Intermodal Transport operations can succeed in the world market through cooperating with the Asian