Report: Ports contribute $4.6T to US economy

Report: Ports contribute $4.6T to US economy
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Ports contribute $4.6 trillion to the U.S. economy, according to a new study released on Tuesday by the American Association of Port Authorities’ (AAPA) .

The report, which was conducted by Lancaster, Pa.-based Martin Associates, found that the economic value of ports rose by 43 percent between 2007 and 2014, despite recurring labor issues that have often threatened the flow of cargo packages into the U.S. 

AAPA President Kurt Nagle said Tuesday that the finding show the need for more federal investment in land connections to ports like trucking and freight railways. 

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“On the land-side alone, AAPA’s U.S. member ports have identified at least $28.9 billion in needed investments by 2025,” Nagle said in a statement. “These necessary road, rail, bridge and tunnel improvements are crucial to enable our seaports to efficiently handle their expected cargo volumes, continue providing dramatic economic and jobs impacts, and enhance America’s international competitiveness.”

Congress passed a $12.3 billion water infrastructure measure in 2013, but the flow of cargo packages was interrupted earlier this year at 29 ports along the West Coast by a labor standoff that required federal intervention

Lawmakers are debating an extension of a surface transportation funding measure that is scheduled to expire in May, but they are struggling to come up with a way to pay for a new round of spending for the infrastructure.