Friday, May 2, 2014

Panama’s $5 Billion Canal Upgrade Jolts U.S. Ports From California to New Jersey

I haven't talked about the Panama Canal for quite some time.  Looks like the expansion completion has been delayed.  Maybe CA can use that to its advantage.
These shippers now unload goods onto trains and trucks on the West Coast of the U.S. to finish the journey east, or make the trip to East Coast destinations from Asia via Egypt’s Suez Canal. The losers are likely to be the West Coast ports -- Long Beach, California; Los Angeles; Oakland, California; Seattle -- and the Suez Canal.

“A cheaper Panama Canal route may also divert current US imports from the Suez Canal, with a significant time savings on the shorter routing,” Barclays Plc said in a report issued last April.

The canal project is only part of the massive infrastructure spending that is propelling the Panamanian economy. Panama is nearing the end of a four-year, $13.6 billion campaign intended to, in the terms of a 2012 report from Standard & Poor’s, remake the country as a shipping and logistics hub on a par with Singapore. (The Singapore analogy is also a favorite of Panama’s president, Ricardo Martinelli.)
And now we read in another article:
[S]ome South American economies are growing at 5 percent, Europe is expected to post better growth and exports, and Chinese shippers prefer to skip California ports and go through the Panama Canal to Houston.

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