Brazil has long been predicted to be one of the top global economies in the 21st century, but has had it’s struggles over the past number of years. However, it is starting to gain some momentum as of late and a recent government announcement of major infrastructure investments totaling US$244 billion, could go a long way to speed up their future economic expectations. The country is the fifth largest in the world, in size and in population, with almost 200 million citizens. It currently ranks 7th in GDP but many global analysts believe it could eventually be number 5 on the list.
Brazil is one of the fasted emerging markets currently in the world, and as a result it must invest in infrastructure now in order to keep pace with the growing consumer base in the future. The ambitious plans will see investments in sanitation, housing, energy, and telecommunications with a huge amount earmarked for the transportation sector with major upgrades to the country’s highways, railways, airports and in particular their shipping ports. Right now, Brazil is experiencing regular delays at major ports and if the nation wants to be in a position to compete in the growing global now and in the future, it must make shipping port investments and upgrading its transport systems/facilities; in order to capitalize on the impending opportunities.
The Brazilian government has plans to spend hundreds of billions of dollars to build a solid foundation for their future economic growth. Many consider this to be an investment that will continue to pay off for decades. The money spent on their ports will make them more efficient and effective and put them on the path to grow into the global consumer powerhouse that many experts have forecast the nation to be. Investing is all about future prospects and it looks like the government of Brazil is expecting these prospective infrastructure investments will pave the way to a brighter and more prosperous future for it’s people and the country itself.
The President of national development bank BNDES, Luciano Coutinho, stated recently that $28 billion was allocated to the ports saying, “According to consultancy studies, the investment amount is expected to be carried out over the next three years by (2016).” This will put Brazil in an excellent position when the new Panama Canal Expansion opens sometime in late 2015. This massive investment into the country’s ports has been a while in coming and the announcement is encouraging to both the general population and business investors. It means many thousands of new jobs and great investment opportunities for both local and foreign investors.
The Port of Los Angeles is the busiest container port in the United States and is hoping it’s going to stay that way after the Panama Canal expansion opens in 2015. It currently ranks in the top 20 in the world for container ports by volume but will be under some increasing competition once the giant new container ships are able to pass through the Panama Canal’s new bigger third lock and thereby gaining greater access to major ports on the east coast of the country.
To ensure they are ready to compete effectively, the port has made huge investments and just recently completed a $370 million channel deepening project that was essential in order to handle even the most gigantic of the new container vessels. Antonio Villaraigosa, Mayor of Los Angeles stated, “This project was important to us because we understand that in order to compete with ports in the United States and around the world, we’ve got to make investments.” He continued, “And we’ve made US$1.3 billion in investments and some 20,000 jobs to make sure we’re competitive.”
While the port of Los Angeles does it’s best to upgrade to more state-of-the-art facilities, ports on the east coast are also doing their best to dredge their waterways and modernize their ports but have been facing some difficult financial and environmental challenges in order to do so. Ports in Florida, Georgia and South Carolina all recognize the golden economic opportunities once the Panama Canal expansion is complete, but their progress to be able to capitalize on it has been slowed somewhat due to a lack of Federal investment dollars to date. These eastern regions still remain hopeful nonetheless and continue to prepare with the necessary infrastructure improvements needed to compete effectively in the future.
Back on the west coast in Los Angeles, it appears their port is ready now to handle whatever size ship comes their way. They knew what they had to do as far back as 10 years ago when the dredging to deepen the channel first began. The region’s officials certainly made the right investment in their future when they needed to in the past and it paid off over the years by creating thousands of jobs that have contributed tens of millions of dollars into the local economy. Investing is all about enjoying a great investing experience and it appears as though the Port of Los Angeles’s investments will pay off well into the future, as they do their best to remain the country’s busiest container port.
Up until recently, the West coast has been the main beneficiary of the bigger cargo ships from Asia. Now with the expansion of the Panama Canal allowing for larger vessels to pass through, it creates enormous opportunities for ports on the East coast of the United States, allowing them to finally be able to effectively compete with the West coast ports; for more business from the eastern parts of the world. One eastern region in particular, Florida, is quite confident it will be ready to compete, when the time comes.
“If I were running a port on the West Coast, I would be on the alert, because the expansion of the canal is going to benefit the Port of Miami and other ports on this coast.”- Port of Miami sub-director.
The Port of Miami, calling itself the Bridge to the Americas, has been busy the last few years getting prepared to capitalize on the impending global trade opportunities. In doing so, the port has invested more than $2 billion modernizing and upgrading their shipping facilities, to be ready when the Panama Canal expansion is complete. These infrastructure investments have spawned thousands of jobs for the region and helped stimulate Florida’s economy in the process. It is estimated that the port will double it’s capacity in the next five to ten years and will support up to 30,000 jobs, throughout the state.
While it may be too early to accurately predict the changes in global trade routes, some of the major shipping companies have already started to establish agreements with accessible global ports, as the new shipping routes begins to take shape. Port and State officials have been determined to become a port destination of choice for industry leaders when the time comes, and it appears as though the Port of Miami will be ready to compete, when the Panama Canal expansion is finished in 2015.