The Panama Canal Authority and the Maryland Port Administration, which oversees the six public marine terminals of the Port of Baltimore, are working together to prepare for the increase in trade expected when the expansion of the Panama Canal is completed in 2014.
ACP Administrator/CEO Alberto Alemán Zubieta and MPA Executive Director James J. White on June 2 signed a Memorandum of Understanding to increase economic growth and commercial activity. The MOU will help spur trade, facilitate information sharing and promote the use of the “all-water route” to Asia from the U.S. East Coast via the Canal.
“With the current economic climate, it has never been more important to provide optimal customer service, and this agreement will enable us to fully cooperate and work together for continued trade between Latin America, Asia and United States,” said Zubieta.
As part of the MOU, the ACP and MPA will conduct joint activities and share best practices. Specific areas of focus will include marketing, research and data interchange, technical advancements and personnel training programs, the organizations said in a statement.
The Panama Canal expansion project will build a new lane of traffic along the Panama Canal through the construction of a new set of locks, which will double capacity, allowing increased traffic and wider ships.
The Canal expansion program is expected to bring larger ships to the U.S. East Coast. The MPA is exploring the possible use of a public-private partnership to operate its Seagirt Marine Terminal and also fund a 50-foot berth ready for operation when the Panama Canal expansion project is completed.
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