The Federal Maritime Commission Newsroom

News

Federal Maritime Commission Participates in White House Roundtable on 21st Century Ports

March 7, 2016

Federal Maritime Commission Chairman Mario Cordero, along with Commissioner William P. Doyle, joined Administration Cabinet Secretaries and the Maritime Administrator on Monday, March 7, 2016 in Baltimore County to engage leaders from government and the shipping, supply chain, and retail sectors in identifing steps needed to maintain and improve the competitiveness of America’s seaports.

Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx, Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker, Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez, and Maritime Administrator Chip Jaenichen led discussions on opportunities arising from efforts to meet the current and projected demands of international trade moving through the Nation’s seaports. Each of the Secretaries and the Administrator highlighted the importance of ports as drivers of job creation and economic growth. Chairman Cordero noted that the top three ports in the United States account for 50% of international trade, and if that number is expanded to the top 11, the figure grows to 85%.

"I am pleased that the White House is recognizing the indispensable role ports play in connecting America’s economy to the world and the significant economic engine these gateways represent," said Chairman Cordero. "International trade begins and ends at our ports and the volume of containerized cargo is only going to grow in the coming years. Even using conservative projections, it is entirely feasible that by 2029 twice as many containers will enter the United States than were landed last year. It is truly in the best interests of everyone that the Nation’s maritime gateways do not become chokepoints."

A significant part of the discussion revolved around the best strategies to alleviate port congestion. Over the past two years, the Federal Maritime Commission has consistently pushed for stronger partnerships among all interested parties to find innovative solutions to port and supply chain congestion.

From left to right: Chairman Cordero,  Secretary of Labor Perez, Secretary of Commerce Pritzker, and Commissioner Doyle