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Published: 18 December 2008      

Everglades logs increase in container traffic

Bucking the trend in US ports, Port Everglades has reported an increase in container traffic in fiscal 2007-8

Containerised cargo volumes at Port Everglades increased during Fiscal Year 2008 (October 1, 2007 through September 30, 2008). The South Florida seaport experienced an 8.66% increase in tonnage to 6.58 Mt and a 3.83% increase in unit terms to 985,095 TEU, almost double the volume of FY2002.

New terminal operators such as Port Everglades Terminal Ltd (MSC) and Florida International Terminal, in the Port’s Southport area, are bringing more international trade through oceangoing shipping to Broward County, notes the port.

Rolling and floating cargoes such as yachts, trucks, tractors and automobiles increased by 22.5% to 240,129 tons in FY2008. More used vehicles are being transported to the islands in the Caribbean, which spurred this growth.

Overall waterborne commerce, however, decreased by 8.2% to 24.2 Mt due to lower volumes of petroleum products and construction materials. Bulk and breakbulk cargos such as cement, steel and lumber decreased by 52% from FY2007.

The port’s total operating revenue, which includes revenue from waterborne commerce, real estate leases, parking and other port services, increased 4.4% to US$117,441,065 in FY2008, while expenses rose by less than 1.4% to US$73,093,351, according to unaudited fiscal year-end reports.

The operating revenue includes a one-time US$3.8M payment from APM Terminals/Universal Terminal for early termination of the company’s agreement and lease.

Port director Phillip C Allen noted the growth in containerised cargo to at several of the port’s existing terminal operators including Crowley Liner Services, Florida International Terminal, Florida Transportation Services, Port Everglades Terminals Ltd. Sun Terminals and St John Shipping.

“Containerised cargo was a positive note in a tough economic year,” said Allen. “While there have been indications that shipping markets have softened in the last two months, we are cautiously optimistic that the volumes will stabilise and continue an upward trend.

“We recognise that we must move forward with necessary infrastructure improvements so that Port Everglades is ready and able to accommodate our customers as they grow their businesses.”

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