Gulf Coast

Gulf Coast

A transformation has taken place at U.S. ports along Gulf of Mexico. Those devastated by Hurricane Katrina in 2005 were forced to rebuild. Gulfport’s work is not yet finished. The Great Recession further impacted the region’s economy. The new bigger locks the Panama Canal offer hope for a resurgence of shipping activity along the U.S. Gulf Coast as ports gear up for new trade from Asia. While some ports are building container volumes in north-south trade and on routes to and from Europe, the Mediterranean, Mideast and Africa, others are targeting growth in breakbulk cargoes, and one port — Corpus Christi — is poised to see explosive growth in energy-based exports. With billions of dollars of agriculture products, pharmaceuticals and manufactured goods crossing the U.S. border with Mexico each year, logistics companies and railroads are looking at ways to ease and expand the flow of trade with the U.S.’s southern neighbor. This page includes information about the ports along the U.S. Gulf Coast, the region’s infrastructure projects, its trade and company supply chains.

Special Coverage

Dockworker at the Port of Savannah
The new or extended contract being explored by International Longshoremen’s Association and its East and Gulf Coast employers could run until 2025, seven years beyond the current agreement’s 2018 expiration.

News & Analysis

Port of Houston
12 Jun 2015
U.S. Gulf ports’ container traffic started strong in 2015, with more than a little help from slowdowns and congestion that hobbled West Coast ports and made shippers look for alternatives.
Port Manatee, Florida
08 Jun 2015
Carlos Buqueras says Port Manatee on Tampa Bay reminds him of Port Everglades, Florida, more than 20 years ago. Buqueras, port executive director, said the port is poised to take advantage of its location, deep channel and undeveloped property.
Port of New Orleans
07 Jun 2015
Appointment systems to meter the flow of trucks are an increasingly popular topic among container terminals. The Port of New Orleans has a head start of more than a decade.
15 May 2015
East Coast and West Coast ports snatched a sizable share of the U.S.containerized import market from their West Coast counterparts in the first fourth months of the year, as shippers shifted cargo away from the congested gateways.
15 May 2015
The leader of the management group that negotiates with West Coast longshoremen said this week that the negotiating process that yielded months of disruption through February is “not sustainable.”
containers at Port of Oakland
08 May 2015
Containerized imports through major U.S. port gateways hit record levels in March as West Coast ports disgorged shipments that backed up during weeks of gridlock, according to the latest Global Port Tracker report.

Commentary

The International Longshoremen's Association, in opening the door to the possibility of a long-term contract, certainly is looking to capitalize on the congestion and raw memories of the recent past that have put West Coast ports in shipper crosshairs. The ILA, indeed, is preying on that shipper sentiment, and the soon-to-open expanded Panama Canal that could shift more cargo from West Coast to East Coast. And who can blame it? That’s business.

Video

Roger Guenther, executive director, Port of Houston Authority, discusses trade lane growth, specifically with Asia and South America, the renaissance in the energy sector, and planning for future expansions at the port.