Georgia Ports On Track for a Record Year

File image courtesy Georgia Ports / Stephen B. Morton

By The Maritime Executive 06-14-2018 04:11:56

The Port of Savannah handled 3 million tons of cargo in May, an increase of nearly nine percent compared to the same month a year ago. It was GPA’s busiest May ever and the second busiest month in the Port of Savannah’s history. For the fiscal year to date, the Port of Savannah has booked an eight percent surge in container volume compared to the same period a year ago. 

“The Georgia Ports Authority is on track to have the most successful year in its history, on a number of fronts,” said GPA Board Chairman Jimmy Allgood. “Record growth in trade, teamwork and a strong relationship with our local communities and elected officials have helped to put our ports over the top.”

Last month, Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal signed a budget bill containing $35 million for the Savannah Harbor Expansion Project. This week, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers announced an additional $35 million for the project in its annual work plan. An additional $50 million included in the federal budget for FY2017 brings the total to $120 million in state and federal funding. 

“Clearly, the leadership demonstrated by Gov. Deal, U.S. Sens. Johnny Isakson and David Perdue, Congressman Buddy Carter and our entire Washington delegation is the secret sauce that enabled Savannah to receive full funding,” Allgood said.

Ro/ro shipment volumes also rose in May. At the Port of Brunswick, the Colonel’s Island auto port moved nearly 54,000 cars, trucks and tractors, up 15 percent. Including Savannah’s Ocean Terminal, the GPA's ro/ro volume increased by nearly nine percent compared to the same period last year. 

“The impressive volumes we’ve been able to move would not have been possible without the strong partnership between the GPA and the members of the International Longshoremen’s Association,” said Lynch. “We would also like to acknowledge the excellent progress made in the master contract negotiations between our partners in the USMX and the ILA.”