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Shipping Numbers are Strong

Posted at: 11/19/2012 7:45 AM

North American commodities for the industrial and manufacturing sectors drove an uptick in tonnage numbers along the Great Lakes-Seaway System.

The St. Lawrence Seaway reported a 9.8 percent increase for total cargo shipments in October – 4.4 million metric tons – compared to October 2011.

For the period March 22 to October 31, year-to-date total cargo shipments were 29.5 million metric tons, a rise of 1.4 percent over the same period in 2011.

“In the General Cargoes category, shipments through the Seaway of iron, steel slabs, project cargoes and domestic general cargoes jumped nine percent over last year’s tally,” said Rebecca Spruill, director, trade development for the Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation.

In the closing months of the 2012 shipping season, tonnage figures for traditional cargoes remain on the positive side for U.S. ports.

“Though lake levels are lower, economic activity has held steady this season in terms of vessel traffic at the Port of Duluth-Superior. Early indications are that the port is on track to wind up this shipping season with tonnage totals comparable to the 37 million short tons moved last year,” said Adele Yorde, Duluth Seaway Port Authority spokesperson. “There’s been a strong demand for iron ore and limestone as world economies supported increased prices, plus there’s been a great deal more movement of general cargo such as components for wind energy projects,” she added.