Exceptional year at the Port of Baltimore

03/14/2016 | Matt Scales

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Exceptional year at the Port of Baltimore

03/14/2016 | Matt Scales

Guest feature: Matthew Scales is the Public Affairs Officer for the Maryland Port Administration. Follow along with the Port on Facebook and Twitter.

Not only was the Helen Delich Bentley Port of Baltimore named the most efficient port in the nation in 2015, but it also witnessed another record-breaking year for key targeted commodities. Containers and imported automobiles were among the top commodities while an average of 9.6 million tons of general cargo crossed Baltimore's docks.

For the fifth consecutive year, Baltimore was ranked as the number one port in the country for handling automobiles, with 753,265 cars traveling through in both public and private terminals. Additionally, a record 399,618 cars were imported in 2015 – a 20 percent increase from the previous year's 331,756 cars.

One of Baltimore's top roll on/roll off carriers, Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics, signed a 30-year contract with the Port. By the carrier staying in Baltimore for another 30 years, it will help the region remain competitive in the auto and ro/ro industry while supporting well-paying jobs.

In addition to autos, another key commodity of the Port increased last year. 523,848 containers came across Baltimore's docks – an eight percent jump from 2014. The Port also welcomed Maersk Line, the world's top shipping line, which operates three weekly container services with Mediterranean Shipping Company.

Other notable commodities that had a strong year in 2015 include forest products, with 398,618 tons of paper handled, and Cruise Maryland, which saw 193,709 passengers set sail out during the year.

Baltimore ranked second in exported coal – its exports were up 10 percent – making it the only major coal port in the country to see an increase. Baltimore is ranked the top port in the country for handling automobiles, farm and construction machinery, imported gypsum, imported sugar and imported aluminum.

Governor Larry Hogan stated, "Besides setting records last year, the Port also welcomed the world's largest container shipping company and signed another shipping giant to a long-term contract. The Port of Baltimore is truly open for business!"

The Port's business produces an average of 13,560 direct jobs in Maryland, while 127,000 jobs statewide are linked to Port activities. Learn more at mpa.maryland.gov.

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