North Carolina Ports Welcomes Largest-Ever Containership
The North Carolina State Ports Authority welcomed the largest containership to call the Port of Wilmington today. The Hanjin Baltimore, measuring 984 feet in length and 140 feet in width, is the first of many post-Panamax vessels to be served at the recently updated container port in North Carolina.
“This is an important day for our Ports and for the State of North Carolina,” said Executive Director Paul J. Cozza. “We’ve been working diligently on modernizing our ports and to see our plans come to fruition by proving that the Port of Wilmington is big ship ready is a great feeling.”
Built in 2005 by Hyundai Heavy Industries, the Hanjin Baltimore has served various Far East trade lanes in its tenure. Holding 7,500 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs), the vessel has approximately 63% more capacity than any ship that has ever called the Port of Wilmington.
“This vessel not only signifies improving global trade but it also represents the future,” said Chief Commercial Officer Greg Fennell. “If there was ever a doubt that we could not accept a post-Panamax vessel, this ship puts that debate to rest.”
Recent infrastructure advancements allow North Carolina’s Ports to improve upon its operational efficiencies, to keep cargo moving and to remain congestion free. The Port of Wilmington will be prepared to handle even larger post-Panamax vessels, up to the 10,000 TEU class, by later this summer.
“This landmark event is the product of a North Carolina Ports infrastructure investment plan to meet shipping industry requirements,” said Tom Adams, Chairman of the Board of Directors. “With the expansion of the Panama Canal taking place last weekend, the Port of Wilmington is adding new cranes, an enhanced berth, a wider turning basin and will have further expansion in the future.”
North Carolina's Ports in Wilmington and Morehead City, plus inland terminals in Charlotte and in Greensboro, link the state's consumers, businesses and industry to world markets, and serve as magnets to attract new business and industry while receiving no direct taxpayer subsidy. Port activities contribute statewide to 76,000 jobs and $700 million each year in state and local tax revenues.
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