Exports help New York-New Jersey port volumes grow
The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey said strong exports offset a decline in imports so that the port had a modest 1.2 percent increase in cargo tonnage to 87.2 million tons in 2007.
General cargo tonnage exports rose 5.2 percent to 32.8 million tons, from 2006. That’s because an 18.8 percent increase in exports offset a 0.4 percent decline in imports.
The port handled 4.1 million loaded TEUs of container cargo in 2007, 7.6 percent more than in 2006. Imports improved 4.4 percent to 2.6 million TEUs, while exports increased 13.7 percent to 1.5 million TEUs.
Automobile traffic was up 9.2 percent. Imported vehicles declined 3.9 percent to 663.539 units, but export vehicles were up a whopping 65.1 percent to 266,759.
New Jersey Gov. Jon Corzine attended the press conference where the results were announced. He praised the port as “growth engine,” and said volumes were likely to double in the next decade.
Port officials highlighted work on the port authority’s ExpressRail on-dock rail system that they said would be completed by 2011. Corzine said ExpressRail can play a part in reducing truck traffic as the port grows.
The system, when fully built, will have the capacity to handle 1.5 million cargo containers a year by rail, taking an estimated 2.5 million trucks off the roads.
ExpressRail set a new record in 2007, handling 358,043 cargo containers, 6 percent more than 2006.
Bulk cargo was down 1 percent to 54 million metric tons in 2007. Bulk cargo imports, led by decreases in ethyl alcohol, salt and crude oil, fell 4.2 percent to 47.1 million tons in 2007. Bulk exports, led by increases in scrap metals, corn and oil, increased 25.8 percent to 7.3 million tons.
There were 5,445 ship calls in the Port of New York and New Jersey in 2007, compared to 5,577 in 2006. ' Chris Dupin