Pennsylvania governor extends cargo growth scheme for another year

Aerial View of Port of Philadelphia at Night

Governor Tom Wolf has extended Pennsylvania’s Intermodal Cargo Growth Incentive Program (PICGIP) until July 2023.

The program was initially established in 2015 through the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation’s (PennDOT) Multimodal Fund and makes up to $1 million available annually to participating ocean carriers that move cargo through the state’s ports.

In turn, the scheme helps secure full time employment at the terminals and increase economic activity through indirect and induced jobs.

The PICGIP was previously expected to end in June 2021.

© Governor Tom Wolf

“Pennsylvania’s ports are more vital than ever and are continuing to increase the volume of essential goods and strengthen the supply chain,” said Wolf.

“Increasing shipping activity will help ensure that goods are delivered to stores in a timely manner.”

In order to be eligible, carriers that have not docked at the Port of Philadelphia (PhilaPort) in the past six months are required to fill out an application on the PennDOT website, whereas existing participants only need to complete a data verification form.

Jeff Theobald, CEO and Executive Director of PhilaPort, added: “The Intermodal Cargo Growth Incentive Program is essential for us to compete with other ports in attracting new ocean carriers and new trade lanes to Pennsylvania.

“This program supports the ocean carrier during the difficult initial phase of entering a port for the first time or starting a new service.

“This is a well-designed program, and PennDOT has done a great job assisting us with implementing it.”

New carriers that sign onto the program will receive $25 per new container unit loaded or discharged per vessels from a Pennsylvania Port. Existing participants qualify for the incentive payment by exceeding established benchmarks.

Since its inception, container lifts of participants have nearly doubled, demonstrating PICGIP’s use to the business growth of Pennsylvania ports.

In February this year, PhilaPort also received a $246 million state investment from the governor to continue its modernisation efforts.

The sum aimed to build upon his previous $300 million Capital Investment Program announced in 2016.

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