CMA CGM has finalized a 10-year contract with Virginia International Terminals, the operating company of the Virginia Port Authority.
The agency said the contract, valued at more than $125 million, guarantees that the French liner will have annual throughput of at least 55,000 containers. The port expects CMA CGM to eventually exceed its minimum throughput requirement.
The carrier has had throughput of between 15,000 and 30,000 containers since it began calling Virginia in 2000. The line's vessels call at Norfolk International Terminals and at Portsmouth Marine Terminal.
The liner, with world headquarters in Marseilles, opened its U.S. offices in Norfolk a year ago.
The port estimates that 70 percent of its liner business is now secured with 10-year contracts. A total of 11 deals are in place including The Grand Alliance, CKY, China Shipping, Turkon, Mediterranean Shipping Co. and ACL.
It expects to sign one or two more long-term contracts before the end of the year.
The port handled a record 1.98 million TEUs in 2005.