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Thursday, February 23, 2006

Our Ports Have Already Been "Taken Over" - the facts on Global Container Terminal Operators

With all the talk about the "Arab takeover of our ports" and the fact that I live in Savannah which has one of the big ports in the USA, I started researching Terminal Operators. A company called Drewry, which is an independent maritime advisor, puts out a yearly report on Global Container Terminal Operators. The report is actually a book but I was able to locate a brochure about the 2005 Annual Report on their website. The brochure contained a list of the Leading Global Container Operators which gave me some basic info to work with. Here are some of the leading Container Operators that have bases at ports in the USA. (excluding DP World and P&O)

APM Terminals - Part of the AP Moller - Maersk Group with corporate headquarters in Copenhagen, Denmark. North American Global Terminals include: Baltimore, Charleston, Houston, Jacksonville, Los Angeles, Miami, New Orleans, Oakland, Port Elizabeth, Port Everglades, Portsmouth, Savannah, Tacoma

China Ocean Shipping (Group) Company (aka COSCO) - the national flag carrier of the People's Republic of China. Headquartered in Shanghai. USA Terminals include: Port Newark/Elizabeth Marine Complex, Baltimore, Charleston, Houston, Long Beach, Miami, New Orleans, Norfolk, Oakland, Savannah, Seattle.

APL - wholly owned subsidiary of Singapore-based Neptune Orient Lines. Services to North America include the ports of New York, Los Angeles, Seattle and the Pacific Northwest.

Hanjin - ports in United States include Boston, Charleston, Long Beach, New York, Norfolk, Oakland, Portland, Savannah, Seattle, Wilmington, Port Everglades/Miami.

Orient Overseas Container Line (OOCL) - wholly owned subsidiary of Orient Overseas (International) Limited (OOIL) based in Hong Kong. Dedicated terminals at Long Beach Container Terminal in California, Global Terminal in New York and New Jersey, Howland Hook in New York.

Evergreen Marine Com - Taiwan based. American ports include Baltimore, Boston, Charleston, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Portland, Savannah, Seattle. Officially opened a new state of the art Pierce County Container Terminal at the Port of Tacoma in Jan 2005.

Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) - based in Geneva Switzerland. US Ports include Boston, New York, Baltimore, Norfolk.

Mitsui OSK Lines - based in Tokyo Japan. Ports in the USA include New York, Baltimore, Charleston, Savannah, New Orleans, Los Angeles, Seattle.

NYK Line - Japanese based. Also includes Ceres Container Terminals, Nippon Container Terminals, NYK Terminals in North America, Yusen Terminals.

Grand Alliance - includes Hapag-Lloyd Container Line (HLCL), MISC Berhad, Nippon Ysen Kaisha and OOCL. Restructured their services following the phasing out of the Maersk-acquired P&O Nedlloyd vessels. Ports of service include: New York, Charleston, New Orleans, Houston, Miami, Seattle, Savannah

There was not one single US based company on the list of 23 Terminal Container Operators. Many of the companies do have US offices despite being based in a foreign country. So when you hear about an Arab takeover at our ports, you need to remind people that Japan, Switzerland and China already have their feet in the door.

Interesting note to this - while driving home from work, I started paying attention to the names on the containers being transported on the highways in Savannah via trucks. I saw every single one of the names listed above (except Grand Alliance) while driving home. Try it for yourself if you live near a port area. See how many you can find. If I listened to the media, I would never leave my home - based on the medias' and politicians statements each one of those containers could be a terrorist threat because they originated in a foreign country.

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