The Jacksonville Port Authority (JAXPORT) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Puerto Rico Ports Authority (PRPA) to reaffirm a commitment to grow maritime trade.
In a statement, JAXPORT said the MoU acknowledges the importance of the existing relationship and will look for ways to strengthen it.
It will see JAXPORT and the PRPA collaborate on key areas including business development and marketing, building relationships with current and potential ocean carriers and best practices in environmental protection, operations and security.
They will also work together to support each other’s growth, including sharing insights into funding and major infrastructure enhancements.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis described the MoU as “great news” for Northeast Florida and the entire state.
“Florida is proud to be the second home to many Puerto Ricans, and this new agreement will build on the special relationship between the Sunshine State and our island neighbour.
“I look forward to the positive economic impacts this agreement will have on JAXPORT, the city of Jacksonville and Puerto Rico.”
Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry said the MoU demonstrates the strong connection between Jacksonville and Puerto Rico and “strengthen” efforts on mutually beneficial projects.
Eric Green, CEO, JAXPORT, said, “After entering the trade by moving a few thousand containers in the 1950s, we are incredibly proud and humbled by the success we now see today.
“Trade with Puerto Rico represents about half of JAXPORT’s container business, a percentage that has held steady even as our international volumes have continued to grow over the years.
“We look forward to this continued partnership and are proud of the benefits it will have for both communities for generations to come.”
JAXPORT unveiled a new strategic plan in February 2021 which looks to increase trade and private sector job creation.