Panama: World-wide port expansions

The construction delays at the Canal’s project will get sorted out, but Ports, Shipping Companies Retool Before Panama Canal Expansion
Project Delays, Cost Overruns Haven’t Halted Global Efforts

Here in the USA,

Miami is spending hundreds of millions of dollars to deepen its harbor and build an underwater tunnel for trucks carrying goods for bigger ships that would use the new canal. The shipping publication, Alphaliner, said 214 of the so-called neo-Panamax ships, as long as four football fields and 161 feet wide, were ordered with sights set on a wider, deeper canal. The booming liquefied natural gas industry in the U.S., which is counting huge ships transporting gas to energy-hungry Asia, has predicated investments on large volumes passing through the canal.

Even citrus growers in Florida are seeking to get their products to Asia and the Pacific coast of Latin America on bigger ships at lower cost, by using a refurbished canal, said Adam Putnam, Florida’s Commissioner of Agriculture.

The booming liquefied natural gas industry, for instance, has been investing heavily to build facilities in the U.S. for natural gas to be exported to Asia. Most LNG ships are today too big for the canal. But the U.S. Department of Transportation said in a November study that 90% of the tankers carrying the liquefied gas would be able to use a refurbished waterway, which connects the Caribbean with the Pacific and saves ships a 5,000 mile voyage.

Let’s hope the Canal’s expansion goes as scheduled.

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4 Responses to “Panama: World-wide port expansions”

  1. jlh Says:

    Our capitalistic Right hand is energetically fracking incredible amounts of natural gas and shipping much of it to our Asian competitors. Our socialistic Left hand is attempting to strangle coal and oil. Is it quaint to wonder when or if our flailing extremities will ever allow us to become energy independent?

  2. Fausta Says:

    Not quaint at all, jlh!

  3. CiLH Says:

    Who’s playing chicken with whom?

    In published reports (http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702304675504579387851171500882) “Ports, Shipping Companies Retool Before Panama Canal Expansion” the Wall Street Journal states “The massive global endeavor comes even as an acrimonious battle between Panama and the builders over $1.6 billion in cost overruns continues.”

    “Channel dredging, carried out by U.S. and other foreign contractors at a cost of about $2.1 billion, went smoothly. But then on New Year’s Day, the European consortium announced it needed $1.6 billion more on top of the $3.1 billion that had been budgeted for the most expensive part of the project, the construction of locks on either end of the canal.

    After weeks of haggling, the consortium led by Spain’s Sacyr and Italy’s Impregilo SpA are closer to reaching a deal that hinges on Spain’s government supporting Sacyr with a hefty loan, said one person close the negotiations. The person added that Spain might want to defend its own brand name given the high profile nature of the spat and the fact the Spain’s Sacyr leads the consortium.”

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