They say that everything is big in the great state of Texas. One thing is becoming clear, they may not be able to have many of the bigger shipping container vessels stopping there, simply because their ports are not be able to accommodate the enormous size of post-panamax ships. At the moment, only the Port of Houston is preparing to handle the giant vessels, and even so, they still have to deepen their berths in front of their container terminals, and that is not expected to be completed until 2014, at the earliest. If Texas and the other gulf states don’t make the investment to upgrade their ports now, then they are not going to be able to compete effectively in the future.
Many regions in the United States are finding themselves caught between a rock and a hard place. They know they must modernize their shipping ports, but they just don’t have the money to invest. Nevertheless, they must find a way to do it somehow, or it could be a long time before they get an opportunity to do so down the road. Furthermore, failure to act now will place the United States in a weak competitive position, as the rest of the world forges ahead with their own economic agendas.
But, officials in Texas have not giving up yet. There are groups and committees being formed to research at all the possibilities, and hopefully develop a positive plan of approach. Governments have realized that the health of their future economy depends on being able to meet the demands of the shipping industry and accommodate the fleets of giant container ships that will be streaming through the Panama canal in 2015, with millions of shipping containers filled with consumer goods. They still have time to prepare, but decisions are going to have to made very quickly or they will undoubtedly miss the big boat, when the time comes.