According to a 2009 study by the University of Georgia’s Terry College of Business, Georgia’s deepwater ports support 295,422 full- and part-time jobs. One job out of every 15 in Georgia is in some way dependent upon its ports. Georgia’s deepwater ports account for $61.7 billion in annual sales, $15.5 billion in income and $2.6 billion in state and local taxes.
Ranked by compounded annual growth rate, the Port of Savannah has been the fastest-growing, major-container port in the nation for 10 years, outpacing the growth of the nearest competitor by two to one.
Maintaining this preferred position among port users is key to state and regional recovery because the nation’s ports are among the first segments of the economy to turn around after a recession.
One of the keys to Georgia’s success in international trade can be attributed to its customer-driven and focused approach. Because Georgia owns and operates many of its deepwater terminals, the GPA has increased flexibility to devote space, equipment and manpower as needed to every customer. For instance, necessary dock space can be allotted with no waiting for proprietary berths. This flexibility allows Georgia to attract and handle more cargo, creating jobs and economic opportunities across the supply chain.
Among the most cost-effective and efficient facilities in the nation, the Ports of Savannah and Brunswick give Georgia a compelling advantage in the competition to win jobs and development.
Curtis J. Foltz is executive director of the Georgia Ports Authority.