Port Expansions, Economic Opportunity

By May 25, 2008Infrastructure, Trade

Speaking of ports, South Carolina and trade, it appears that the South Carolina-Georgia cooperation to build a new port facility in Jasper County, S.C., will have a major economic impact. From The State, March 7:

States from North Carolina to Florida have been investing heavily in ports, with an eye to bigger cargo ships being able to move through the Panama Canal in 2012. The lack of a long-term answer in South Carolina would at some point begin affecting the interest shown by major shipping companies.

To break the logjam, Gov. Sanford and Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue forged a deal to have the two states develop the Jasper site in a joint effort, under a still-to-be-settled final structure.

What persuaded Georgia to stop the fight? Mr. Davis said a key argument went like this: Join us and share in Jasper’s success, or after a drawn-out legal fight, get nothing.

I’m sure that was a big part of it, but it must have helped that the two governors are free-market conservatives and political mavericks.

Since the two governors agreed last year, the process is rolling along, Mr. Davis says. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers controls the site, because it has been dumping river dredge there. Corps leadership now says it will expedite the process of getting the construction approved.

More details on the project here.

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