AAPA Seaports Advisory

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North Carolina Ports Attracts Additional Transpacific Container Service

THE Alliance ocean container carrier consortium has added the Port of Wilmington to its EC2 all-water Asia-U.S. East Coast service. This weekly service will begin calling the North Carolina port in May.   

Far East ports of call include Qingdao, Ningbo, Shanghai and Busan, connecting with the U.S. East Coast via the expanded Panamax canal and vessels of 8,500 TEU capacity.

"Our comprehensive port coverage continues to improve at North Carolina Ports," said Ports Authority Executive Director Paul J. Cozza. "This new partnership with THE Alliance, a recent announcement with the 2M Alliance, plus our existing services, provide regional importers and exporters with a plethora of options through our Port of Wilmington."

THE Alliance members are NYK Group, "K" Line, MOL, Yang Ming and Hapag-Lloyd.

Both Yang Ming and "K" Line have a long history at the Port of Wilmington. Yang Ming has called here for more than 35 years. The carriers are returning to North Carolina following the bankruptcy last fall of Alliance partner Hanjin.

The ports authority hopes the new service will draw more agricultural exports – particularly pork and poultry – through the Port of Wilmington Cold Storage facility, and thus help North Carolina farmers grow their Asian export business.

As part of its ongoing infrastructure investment plan, North Carolina Ports recently announced the order of two New Panamax ship-to-shore cranes with an option to purchase two more from a Chinese manufacturer.

Between the new cranes, turning basin expansion project, various berth improvements, and the expansion of the container yard, North Carolina Ports will pump more than $120 million into its infrastructure over the next few years.

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