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Meanwhile, ports continue to expand as ships get bigger, and the world’s top dredging contractors are working on major expansions from the U. China Rising China has managed its own waterways with dikes, dredging, canals and reservoirs for millennia, and hydraulic engineering has been a cornerstone of public policy since at least the Han Dynasty.

Generations of Chinese leaders drew legitimacy and power from the maintenance of the country’s canals, and more than a few – including former President Hu Jintao – rose to prominence after finding success as hydraulic engineers.

CCCC draws most of its dredging revenue from domestic projects, but when the need arises it also serves Beijing’s foreign policy initiatives.

It gained international notoriety when it deployed modern, high-tech equipment to build China’s island bases in the South China Sea – including dredgers like the , the largest and most expensive CSD in Asia at the time of her launch.

The firm is a relatively new entrant to the international dredging market, but it’s starting to scoop up more contracts abroad, especially Chinese-financed contracts tied to Beijing’s multitrillion-dollar “One Belt, One Road” initiative or OBOR, a trade name for Chinese global infrastructure investment.

Under the OBOR rubric (and a similar concept that preceded it), CCCC completed the port of Hambantota, Sri Lanka in 2010 and is now building a new 0 million seaport in Lamu, Kenya.

The deepening of the silt-laden Yangtze River estuary, the world’s busiest waterway, required 170 million cubic meters of capital dredging – over four times the amount for the Suez Canal expansion.The Port of Corpus Christi Authority aims to lift that limit.It has a congressionally-approved, 0 million plan in place to dredge its channel to 54 feet, which would be enough for million-barrel Suezmax tankers. The next truly big thing for marine construction may be China’s “One Belt, One Road” initiative to build transportation infrastructure abroad: It’s a trillion-dollar gamble, and it’s funding large, complex dredging projects in unexpected places. For both “capital dredging” (creating new or expanded waterways) and “maintenance dredging” (preserving existing waterways), it’s a bull market. China’s island-building campaign appears to be finished, and Dubai’s land-reclamation market has slowed.Not all its overseas projects are directly linked to Chinese initiatives.Late last year, a CCCC-led consortium won the design contract for the first segment of the Venice Offshore Onshore Port project, which will extend the Port of Venice with container and petroleum terminals on reclaimed land.Over the span of just a few years, Chinese-operated dredgers created seven islands with 3,200 acres of new land, enabling China’s military to install runways, radar arrays and air defense batteries in waters claimed by neighboring states.China’s island-building campaign wrapped up last year, and CCCC has put its assets to work on other ventures including China’s rising number of overseas port and waterway projects.The conditions in the Russian Arctic are not easy to work in, and Sabetta is reliably ice-free for just three months of the year.Last season, Jan de Nul brought in 18 dredgers from around the world to work round-the-clock on the entrance channel, access channel and turning basin.