The Panama Canal Authority and the Port of Miami have renewed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to promote trade opportunities and share best customer practices.
Prior to signing the MOU renewal, Alberto Alemán Zubieta, administrator and CEO of the Panama Canal Authority (ACP), and Bill Johnson, Port of Miami director, met with local dignitaries and members of the international trade and Panamanian-American business communities to discuss the port’s 50-foot Deep Dredge project and the expansion of the Panama Canal.
In its commitment to accommodate the world’s largest vessels, the Port of Miami’s Deep Dredge project will deepen the channel by 50 feet and is timed to coincide with the completion of the Panama Canal expansion project.
"As Panama continues to become the logistics and maritime hub of the Americas, the renewal of our memorandum of understanding with the Port of Miami emphasizes our commitment to promoting regional growth and solutions for the shipping industry as we forge ahead with our historic Canal expansion," said Alemán Zubieta. “This agreement will create unlimited opportunities for the international trade industry and consumers.”
The Port of Miami is the largest container port in Florida with a $17 billion annual economic impact on the region, providing direct and indirect employment for more than 180,000 jobs. With its strategic position as the closest major U.S. port to the Panama Canal, the Port of Miami will be the first port of call for the Post-Panamax vessels that will begin navigating the expanded canal in 2014. As a result of the port tunnel project, traffic flow is expected to be improved and cargo movement inefficiencies alleviated while economic development, safety and efficiency are enhanced.
The Canal’s expansion is on schedule as it recently began permanent concrete work on the new set of locks. This $5.25 billion project will expand the waterway with deeper and wider entrances at the Atlantic and Pacific channels in addition to creating a third set of locks that will allow the transit of longer and wider ships.