UBC Theses and Dissertations

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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Character and pervasiveness of transport competition in the movement of commodities from Great Vancouver origins to British Columbia destinations Gray, John Sinclair


The transportation networks in the province of British Columbia are described with reference to the general economic setting and the geographical and historical background. In turn, rail, water, and road transport networks are described with brief mention of air and pipeline transport. The study of competition in the transportation industry is undertaken with the primary basis being a series of interviews with representatives of shippers, carriers, government departments, and other organisations. The character and pervasiveness of competition between the modes of public freight transportation and of competition among carriers within those modes are discussed in some detail. Inter-modal competition is examined in the light of half a dozen factors which influence the shipper's choice of mode. An approximate rank order of shipper's modal preference for these factors is presented. Intra-modal competition is examined in terms of a dozen factors which influence the shipper's choice of the particular carrier, five of these factors being common to the modal choice. The extent of private transportation systems within the province (mainly rail and road) is described. The ancillary modes, bus transportation and mail are analyzed briefly. Observations and conclusions include a discussion of current trends in the major modes, and the extent of monopolies and over-service, particularly in the trucking industry. Comments are offered on the level of sophistication in the transportation industry in the province and. the opportunities for a more intensive market-oriented approach.

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