Port managers and officials at the ports of Los Angeles and the Port of Long Beach are planning to release a strategy that would allow them to increase trade with Latin America, with Noel Hacegaba, Chief Commercial Officer of the Port of Long Beach, expecting to see plans ready for the consideration of harbour commissioners in early 2016, according to the Long Beach Press Telegram.
Hacegaba said that the expansion of the Panama Canal, which is due to be completed in April, 2016 has sparked an interest in Latin American markets, as well as the port’s own Middle Harbor expansion project and manufacturing activity shifting from China to East Asia.
Hacegaba said: “We are more ready than ever to start tapping new markets.”
Marcel van Dijk, Marketing Manager at the Port of Los Angeles, said: “Latin America is a very good market for us, especially the perishables trade. A lot of coffee is coming from there, while Asia is more the finished products. We get fresh fruit from Chile in the winter season.”
Mario Cordero, Chairman of the Federal Maritime Commission, said: “Business has substantially increased, but the truth is, we’re still at 3%. It is not wise to put all of our eggs in one basket when it comes to China and Asia. The challenge and the vision here is to have a diverse economy.”