Caribbean Ports Race to Meet the Demands of the Panama Canal

Regions all around the world compete to meet the demands of the Panama Canal in fear of their ports being passed. The Caribbean Islands think one outcome, due to their port’s positioning, is to possibly be a transshipment and logistics center. Located at the intersection of east-west and north-south shipping routes, the Caribbean Islands’ ports are in a tremendous place- an advantage in the ever growing shipping industry.

The thinking is that massive post-Panamax ships will transship their containers from China, Japan and the Pacific Rim to the Caribbean. From here, the containers will go to smaller east-coast ports in the United States. This port is in position to intersect all trades with massive vessels, then transshipping them to new Panamax vessels, in order to reach distribution centers through the Panama Canal. Caribbean islands can expect an excellent yield from upgrading their ports to accommodate such mega-container vessels.

The Panama Canal expansion deadline in 2015, highlights the need for accommodation in most shipping ports throughout the world. With this strategy, the Caribbean Islands can expect a more prosperous economy. The Caribbean islands are simply taking advantage of the United States’ inability to accept mega-container ships, by means of creating a transshipment port which transfers cargo to smaller ships then is distributed to the world. Major competing hubs within the Caribbean are Kingston harbor, located in Jamaica; Freeport located in the Bahamas; Caucedo located in Dominican Republic; Panama; and Colombia. In Jamaica, one of a small number of large transshipment and logistics centers are going to emerge. The Caribbean Islands can expect the spawn of new export-related assembly and service industries within these regions.

Ultimately, shipping containers can reach their appropriate markets quicker and more efficient with this port in place. Being a major distribution center has its economical perks. You can expect this port to introduce new cash flow and jobs into the Caribbean communities, whether in shipping or logistics. The demand at which the Panama Canal is anticipating following expansion, has port authorities all around the world intrigued with the possibilities of contributing to economic growth, as well as; the ever expanding shipping industry.

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