March 13th, 2014
The Mexican state of Veracruz and the U.S. state of Pennslyvania could soon shift trade to a long neglected, but possibly more economical trade route.
Maritime and port representatives convened in Philadelphia this week to discuss a move from tradition terrestrial trucking to trade by cargo ship between Veracruz and the Delaware River.
Veracruz is located 1,926 nautical miles from Philadelphia.
Representative group Ship Philly First described the four-day maritime route as cheaper, faster, cleaner and safer than highway trade.
Despite the purported benefits of the route, however, there has been no regular shipping service between the two regions in an estimated 40 years.
Mexico currently participates in a reported US$10 billion in bilateral trade with the region. In 2013, Mexico received US$3.4 billion in exports, up 5% year on year, from Pennsylvania.
Imports to Pennsylvania from Mexico primarily include food and other agricultural products, textiles and fabrics. Pennsylvania’s exports include chemicals, machinery, computers and electronic products.
At the Philadelphia Wholesale Produce Market, where various shipping lines were invited to visit, an estimated 25% of fruit in the 20-acre refrigerated facility hails from Mexico, Ship Philly First indicated.
Ship Philly First coordinated the event with the Consulate of Mexico in Philadelphia and the Philadelphia Regional Port Authority.
Company president Fred Sorbello said the maritime service would offer higher returns to growers and more well-paid jobs in Pennsylvania and Veracruz.