The Port of Houston posted record operating revenues in 2001, driven by the highest-ever volumes of containerized cargo
, a surge in intermodal rail activity, strong auto imports and growth among key customers.
Operating revenues increased to a record $107.2 million from $106.6 million in 2000. Operating income for the year was $18.6 million compared to $23 million in 2000.
"Business trends for the Port continue to be strong, despite a weak economy, which is a testament to the important economic role the Port serves in the Houston region," said Port Authority Chairman James T. Edmonds.
Operating income dipped below the previous year primarily because of a decline in steel imports as a result of heightened steel import restrictions. Steel imports have been impacted by new trade regulations and as a result, Port of Houston steel imports are down 29 percent.
The Port's total container volume reached a record 1,071,601 million TEUs (20-foot-equivalent units), marking the third consecutive year that more than a million containers have moved through the Port. In addition, TEU tonnage grew to a record 9.99 million tons, a 2.5 percent increase over 2000.
"Despite increased container volume, the rate of growth in the Port's container traffic is actually slowing because we are running out of space," Edmonds continued. "We simply do not have the capacity to serve everyone who wants to come to the Port of Houston. The need for the proposed Bayport Container and Cruise Terminal, which would triple the Port's container handling capacity and add more than 39,000 new jobs at full build out, is abundantly clear."