“I want to wake up in a city that doesn’t sleep“
so goes the lyrics from the song “New York, New York” made famous by Frank Sinatra in the late 1970s..
While the Port of New York and New Jersey is not yet there in terms of 24-hour port operations, they have done themselves mighty proud by taking over the number 1 spot as USA’s busiest port from San Pedro Bay ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach..
The port of New York and New Jersey has maintained this lead since August 2022.. The gap in volume between New York and Los Angeles has been reduced by a whopping 87% in 2022 compared to 2005..
A proud moment indeed for the Director of Port Authority of New York & New Jersey’s Port Department Bethann Rooney who took over the position in May 2022.. Prior to that, Bethann was General Manager for Port Security for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey..
Bethann is a 28-year veteran in the maritime industry with a Master’s in International Transportation and a Bachelor’s in Marine Transportation from the State University of New York Maritime College and a qualified Third Mate..
Shipping and Freight Resource caught up with Bethann Rooney as part of the Executive Insights series where we discussed several aspects related to the port performance, volume handling, OSRA, USA national shipping line, labor negotiations with the ILA, and future plans..
Below is the video insights from the interview..
Key quotes from the interview :
- We are returning to the status that we had as the number one port in the country for many, many years prior to Los Angeles
- A combination of a plan where the Port Authority and our terminal operators have been investing heavily in our infrastructure and the supporting systems to service the cargo and meet the demand
- It was important to us that we provide a level of reliable service so that they could continue to move that cargo through New York, New Jersey so.
- We are not seeing yet a return of cargo to the West Coast and it is our goal to hang on to that cargo.
- In 2019 we published our Port Master plan that would take us through the year 2050, and in that Port master plan, we forecasted that our planning volume would be 9.5 million TEUs for the period around 2029-2030.
- We did that volume last year, so we got thrust into the future with that extraordinary growth in cargo that was 27-28% over the pre-pandemic levels.
- I certainly support fully the US flag fleet and I think if there were to be a U.S. National shipping line, it would certainly help with exports from the United States with targeted exports.
- Our terminal operators continue to invest in new cargo-handling equipment and new yard optimization/gate optimization. The big change that you know we all need to make is to begin to develop a framework for how we will migrate and transition over time to a 24/7 operation.
- One thing I am confident about is our workforce, the ILA is an extremely patriotic group of men and women who are committed to moving cargo and getting the job done.
You can listen to the audio interview below..