Virginia ports see container growth
The Virginia Port Authority said nearly 2.13 million TEUs moved through Hampton Roads ports in 2007, 82,000 TEUs more than in 2006.
“With all of the consolidation that has taken place in the industry, a soft economy, overall competition and the change in leadership here we were still able to post 4 percent growth, that says a lot about the effort and focus of the VPA and our operating company, Virginia International Terminals,” said Jerry A. Bridges, VPA’s executive director.
Thomas D. Capozzi, senior marketing director, has forecast 2.5 percent growth in container volume for 2008.
VPA owns and operates three cargo marine terminals in Hampton Roads: Norfolk International Terminals, Portsmouth Marine Terminal and Newport News Marine Terminal. The container volumes also include traffic at the new APM-Maersk terminal that opened last year in Portsmouth.
In 2007 The Port of Virginia handled 2,289 ship calls and 366,739 tons of breakbulk cargo.
The VPA also said the amount of cargo moved by rail in 2007 from the three VPA marine terminals to Midwest markets increased by 83,990 TEUs, or 20.9 percent when compared with 2006.
In addition to the Midwest volume, the amount of cargo moved between the three VPA marine terminals and the VPA’s Virginia Inland Port in Front Royal, Va. increased by more than 8,000 TEUs or 14.4 percent when compared with 2006.
Capozzi said that in 2008 “we feel the softening economy, combined with the difficulty of producing growth in the rail sector following a 20 percent performance in 2007, will cause our rate of growth to taper off a bit.”