In July, the Georgia Ports Authority (GPA) has handled 447,590 TEU, a 17 per cent increase over the 381,825 TEU carried in June.
GPA President and CEO, Griff Lynch, said: “I would like to thank our customers, and commend our employees, our partners at Gateway Terminals, and the Savannah and Brunswick ILA for achieving one of our busiest July performances ever.
“Their efforts were aided by the reopening of Container Berth 1 at Garden City Terminal, which is already making a positive impact on the flow of cargo.”
The dock renovations increased annual berth capacity by 25 per cent and extended the port’s ability to serve vessels capable of carrying 16,000+ TEU.
GPA Chief Operating Officer, Ed McCarthy, stated: “The expanded berth and four of the largest ship-to-shore cranes in North America came online last month, providing faster vessel service and an increase of 1.5 million TEU in annual berth capacity.
“The Port of Savannah can now serve five big ships simultaneously, and has eliminated its vessel backlog.”
GPA has purchased eight new ship-to-shore cranes for Garden City Terminal in total. The first four arrived in February and were operational by July; the following four are scheduled to arrive on 24 August and will be operational by December.
GPA Board Chairman, Kent Fountain, said: “We’re excited about our infrastructure projects, which are preparing Georgia Ports for the future.
“In addition to Berth 1, our transload facility will come online in September. We already have customers lined up to use the long-term storage at Garden City Terminal West opening in November, and construction is under way to renovate the berths and container yard at Ocean Terminal.”
Taken combined, the next enhancements will raise the Port of Savannah’s container capacity by roughly 3.5 million TEU per year, for a new total annual capacity of 10 million TEU by 2026.
Compared to the pre-pandemic month of July 2019, last month’s performance was an increase of 60,564 TEU, for a compound annual growth rate over the last four years of 3.7 per cent.
The July performance constituted a decrease of 16 per cent compared to July 2022, which was GPA’s busiest July on record, at 530,800 TEU.
In Ro-Ro cargo, Georgia Ports handled nearly 71,000 units of autos and heavy machinery in July, an increase of 23 per cent or 13,367 units compared to the same month last year. It was a top five month for Ro-Ro at GPA.
Lynch added: “The strong showing in finished vehicles last fiscal year has continued into the first month of FY2024. The primary driver is increased production supported by better microchip availability.”