Mexico’s top port official expects energy sector reforms to fuel a surge in growth at ports along the country’s Gulf coast.
Guillermo Ruiz de Teresa, general co-ordinator of Mexican Ports and Merchant Marine, said deepwater offshore oil contracts could do for Gulf of Mexico ports what the container trades did for Pacific coast ports.
“With increasing investment in new offshore deals, there will be a strong push towards maritime activities in the Gulf, which will strengthen our logistics potential as a crossroads between the major economies of the world,” said Ruiz de Teresa, speaking at the American Association of Port Authorities’ spring conference on 20 April in Washington, DC.
As part of a plan by Mexican president Enrique Pena Nieto to “transform Mexico into a global logistics platform”, Ruiz de Teresa said the Mexican government will invest more than USD5 billion in the country’s port sector by 2018.
In addition to building four new ports that will cater to demand from the offshore energy sector, Ruiz de Teresa said expansion at the port of Vera Cruz will be the most important Mexican port project in the next few years.
After anticipated start-up in 2018, he said the multi-purpose Gulf coast port is expected to handle an additional 66 million tonnes of cargo by 2024, making a total of 88 million tonnes.