Louisiana ports sign deal to market facilities

By: | at 08:00 PM | Maritime  

Port of New Orleans, Plaquemines Port, Harbor, Terminal District to combine marketing efforts The Board of Commissioners of the Port of New Orleans and the Plaquemines Parish Port, Harbor and Terminal District signed a cooperative endeavor agreement today to jointly market current and future facilities to the worldwide maritime industry.

‘This is a great day for Plaquemines Parish,’ said Plaquemines Parish President Billy Nungesser. ‘Our future lies with the Mississippi River. We are looking forward to working with the Port of New Orleans and we can surely benefit from the many years of experience they have in port operations. In the global economy, we can be more successful as a region in competition for trade as opposed to many small agencies standing alone.’

The Plaquemines District is well suited for a variety of industries requiring barge and ship access with more than 90 miles of river frontage and close proximity to the Gulf of Mexico. The Lower Mississippi River Port Complex, stretching from Baton Rouge to Plaquemines, is the busiest waterway in the world. More than 6,000 oceangoing vessels traverse the River annually and port officials see regional cooperation as a key component to securing future maritime investment.

‘We are looking forward to working with the Plaquemines Parish Port, Harbor and Terminal District to jointly market our facilities to potential investors,’ said Gary LaGrange, President and CEO of the Port of New Orleans. ‘Parochial thinking is a thing of the past. In the new global economy we must work together as a region to be competitive.’

In addition to marketing its deep-water river port, Plaquemines Parish officials are currently studying the expansion of its energy port at Venice, LA to service new oil and gas exploration leases opened in the eastern Gulf of Mexico. Officials hope to improve access to Venice by dredging Baptiste Collette Bayou to a depth of 27 feet. Venice is closer than any other Gulf Coast port to the new lease area, which is set for drilling in 2008.

Under terms of the new agreement, Plaquemines and Port of New Orleans officials will develop a joint marketing plan to promote the facilities of each entity and agree to consider joint investments of capital and joint port and terminal operations to maximize cargo throughput at both ports. Staff will be assigned to prepare plans and set goals and objectives to implement the initiative.


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