The Georgia Ports Authority set all-time records for both container volumes and total tonnage in May 2015 with strong growth across several key business sectors.
”Strong performances at GPA’s five deepwater terminals, including bulk cargoes and containerized freight, contributed to the growth,” said GPA Executive Director Curtis Foltz. During his report at its June meeting, Foltz told GPA’s board of directors that the authority had moved more than 338,000 20-foot equivalent unit containers (TEUs), a 16.4% increase, and 2.9 million tons of freight, a 9.6% jump.
“Superior service and unmatched connectivity to inland markets are driving growth at Georgia’s deepwater ports,” said James Walters, GPA board chairman. “Our ability to handle expanding cargo volumes—without congestion delays—has set GPA apart in support of farming, retail, and manufacturing customers.”
Other notable developments included growth at GPA’s East River Terminal in Brunswick GA. Focused exclusively on bulk cargoes, East River Terminal, operated by Logistec, experienced a 44.2% gain (41,168 tons) for a total of 134,277 tons of commodities moved. Foltz attributed that growth, in part, to strong biofuel exports to Northern Europe.
“Our ports are a vital link to global markets for Georgia exports, with forest products playing an important role in the state’s economy,” said GPA Vice-Chairman James Allgood. “In addition to wood pellets used as renewable fuel, the GPA handles forest-derived exports including wood pulp, paper, lumber, and cellulose fibers.”
Growing nearly as fast as East River, Colonel’s Island Terminal in Brunswick improved by 40.2% (49,575 tons), largely on expansion in soybean meal. A total of 172,825 tons of bulk and breakbulk cargo moved across Colonel’s Island docks in May. Across all terminals, bulk cargo grew by 60% (105,820 tons) in May to reach 282,613 tons.
Georgia’s deepwater ports and inland barge terminals support more than 369,000 jobs throughout the state annually and contribute $20.4 billion in income, $84.1 billion in revenue, and $2.3 billion in state and local taxes to Georgia’s economy. The Port of Savannah handled 8% of US containerized cargo volume and 11% of all US containerized exports in 2014.
For more information, go to www.gaports.com.