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Panama Canal extends mou with Georgia port

Panama Canal extends mou with Georgia port

Panama City: The Panama Canal Authority (ACP) has signed a three year extension to its June 2003 partnership with the Georgia Ports Authority (GPA) to continue cooperation on joint marketing efforts, exchange of data, market studies, expansion plans, training and technology, etc

"The Canal's renewed alliance with the GPA is a strong indicator of our commitment to the maritime industry and our customers," said ACP administrator& ceo Alberto Alemán Zubieta. "Through information sharing and collaboration, we will continue to maximize our resources to remain on the pulse of maritime innovation and enhance our services. This partnership is an important link for future growth, opening doors for new business opportunities and providing sustainable economic solutions for Panama and Georgia."

The fourth largest and fastest growing port in the United States, Savannah reported double-digit growth last year, with 42% of the net increase attributed to 13,949,667 tons of cargo transiting the Panama Canal. GPA executive director Doug J. Marchand expects the renewed strategic alliance to generate new economic opportunities for Georgia and the Southeastern United States.

Panama's $5.25bn Canal Expansion Program will build a new lane of traffic along the Panama Canal through the construction of a new set of locks, which will double capacity and allow more traffic and longer, wider ships.

In preparation for the expanded Canal, the GPA will launch the Savannah Harbor Expansion Project, designed to deepen the Savannah River from 42 to 48 feet, in 2009. With an estimated completion date of 2013, the widened shipping channel will be able to handle the larger vessels that will transit an expanded Panama Canal. It is expected to capture new trade opportunities from the growing "All-Water Route" from Asia to the U.S. East and Gulf Coasts via the Panama Canal.  [10/09/08]