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Georgia Governor Sonny Perdue
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Governor Perdue Announces Record Year for Georgia's Ports

Monday, July 30, 2007  Contact: Office of Communications 404-651-7774


14.5 percent increase in containers handled over last year


ATLANTA – Governor Sonny Perdue announced today the Georgia Ports Authority (GPA) handled more than 2.3 million TEUs (Twenty-foot Equivalent Unit containers) in fiscal year 2007, a 14.5 percent increase, setting a new record for containers handled at the Port of Savannah. The GPA’s total tonnage for all terminal facilities, including Bainbridge, Brunswick, Columbus and Savannah surpassed 21 million tons, an 8.7 percent increase, which is also a record for the Authority.

“Georgia’s ports are playing an increasingly vital role in our overall economic growth strategy,” said Perdue. “The growth of our ports is helping to fuel our transportation and logistics industry and create economic opportunities throughout Georgia.”

The Port of Savannah is now the fourth busiest and fastest growing container terminal in the United States. In just the past five years, the number of TEU containers handled has increased from 1.5 million handled in FY03 to 2.3 million in FY07, a 55 percent increase. 

“These record-setting tonnage and container totals are the main reasons why the ports contribute so significantly to our economy,” said former U.S. Senator Mack Mattingly, GPA’s outgoing Chairman of the Board, whose term expired this year. “The completion of the harbor deepening project in Brunswick and the commencement of the project in Savannah will ensure the future success of international trade in Georgia.”

 “I thank Senator Mack Mattingly for his tireless commitment and success during his four years on the Authority and two years as Board Chairman,” Governor Perdue added. “Senator Mattingly has graciously agreed to continue his involvement with our ports, working to ensure the completion of the Savannah Harbor deepening.”

 “In addition to handling more containers than ever before, we also experienced a 9.4 percent increase in intermodal lifts, or 235,448 lifts for the year, another example of how critical the Port of Savannah has become as a transportation hub for the nation,” said GPA Executive Director Doug J. Marchand.  “You can count on more great things from the GPA in 2007 as an extensive program of expansion and construction projects are commenced and completed.” 

Georgia’s deepwater ports and inland barge terminals support more than 286,476 jobs throughout the state annually and contribute $14.9 billion in income, $55.8 billion in revenue and $2.8 billion in state and local taxes to Georgia’s thriving economy.