AAPA highlights federal funding need

Kurt Nagle Kurt Nagle: “Seaport cargo activity accounts for 26 percent of U.S. GDP, over 23 million American jobs, and generates over $320 billion annually in federal, state and local tax revenues"

$66bn federal funding is required to supplement $155bn of planned US port capital improvements, the American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA) has stressed.

APPA president and chief executive Kurt Nagle spoke of the need for transport investment to aid development of port jobs, tax revenues and freight volumes, following US President Donald Trump's first State of the Union address, in which he called on Congress to pass an infrastructure bill that could see $1.5tr invested in infrastructure.

Over 25% GDP

Mr Nagle remarked: "The AAPA is looking forward with great anticipation to an infrastructure package this year that focuses on America's transportation investment needs, particularly for freight movement.

“Seaport cargo activity accounts for 26% of US GDP, over 23 million American jobs, and generates over $320 billion annually in federal, state and local tax revenues. To ensure these jobs, tax revenues and freight volumes continue to grow and support the American economy, the AAPA has worked with its member ports to identify $66bn in federal port-related infrastructure investments over the next 10 years, on both the waterside and the landside.

"These federal investments are necessary to supplement the approximately-$155bn in capital improvements that US port authorities and their private-sector partners are planning between 2016 and 2020."

Reduced approval time

Mr Trump would also like to see the approval process for capital projects cut from 10 years to two or less.

Additionally, the President also talked about international trade deals, and investing in workforce development and training. Ports are hubs for international trade and fair trade agreements are critical to America's economic prosperity and competitiveness, pointed out the AAPA.

It added that investments in workforce development and training are key to the success of ports and the entire maritime sector, which need skilled labour and trained professionals.

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