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New Orleans and Panama Renew Alliance

Alberto Alemán Zubieta, left, and Gary LaGrange sign the strategic alliance on June 18. The alliance is renewable every three years.

Alberto Alemán Zubieta, left, and Gary LaGrange sign the strategic alliance on June 18. The alliance is renewable every three years.

During an official ceremony Panama on June 18, Panama Canal Administrator/CEO Alberto Alemán Zubieta and Port of New Orleans President and CEO Gary LaGrange signed a Memorandum of Understanding renewing a strategic alliance first initiated in 2003.

“As we embark on the next phases of the Panama Canal expansion project, we remain committed to providing solutions to the long-term needs of the shipping and maritime community,” said Alemán Zubieta.

The Port of New Orleans is the only deepwater port in the United States served by six “Class One” railroads (the largest category of freight railroads). The Port has been steadily moving past the Katrina recovery stage and is now looking toward future growth opportunities. Both the ACP (Panama Canal Authority) and the Port of New Orleans are dedicated to further increasing capacity and fostering growth. In 2007 alone, roughly 2.5 million short tons of general cargo came to the New Orleans port through the Canal – more than one third of the Port’s general cargo total.

“The Panama Canal is a vital link that connects New Orleans to key trading partners in Asia and along the West Coast of South America. The Panama Canal Authority and the Port of New Orleans are each making substantial investments to improve the flow of commerce along these trade routes,” said LaGrange.

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