Economic Snapshot Overview by Dr. Reid Cummings - July 2018

Posted on July 16, 2018 by Dr. Reid Cummings
Dr. Reid Cummings

Pier looking over Mobile Bay data-lightbox='featured'

Greetings, and welcome to the July 2018 Mobile Bay Economic Snapshot.

As one drives to and from Mobile and the Eastern Shore, the many cranes at the Port appear to grow ever larger as the journey proceeds. Indeed, in recent years, it is clear that the number of cranes has grown. What is also quite noticeable is that many have grown in size too. Catching these iron giants at work as they effortlessly move materials and containers to and from ships at dock in the Mobile River is truly an amazing sight to see!

Admittedly, though, as many times as I have trekked back and forth across the Bay, only rarely have I stopped to consider how the Port’s operation affects our regional economy. The list of materials flowing in and out of the Port is extensive. Imports include heavy lift and oversized cargo, containers, coal, aluminum, iron, steel, copper, lumber, wood pulp, plywood, fence posts, veneers, roll and cut paper, consumer goods, cement, and chemicals. Exports include heavy lift and oversized cargo, containers, coal, lumber, plywood, wood pulp, oriented strand board, laminate, flooring, roll and cut paper, iron, steel, frozen poultry, grain, and chemicals. Some notable numbers about the Port’s operation include:

  • 4,000 acres of total land mass
  • 41 ship berths
  • 462 inland docks
  • 2.4 million square feet of dock yards
  • 2.6 million square feet of warehouse facilities
  • 28.7 million tons of cargo handled in 2017
  • 318,889 TEU’s handled in 2017
  • 137,623 revenue-producing rail cars handled in 2017
  • $22.4 billion dollars in total value
  • 134,608 direct and indirect jobs
  • $486.9 million dollars of annual direct and indirect tax impact

The Port is so important to the State of Alabama; it is particularly important to everyone in our region. This is why we launched our newest Port-related dashboards showing:

  1. how Mobile compares to other Southern U.S. Ports in terms of volume and,
  2. what commodities are imported and exported to and from Mobile and other Southern U.S. ports.

We are so pleased to introduce our latest effort, and hope you will find this new information, as well as the many other data points that we track each month to be timely, relevant, and useful. As always, we encourage you to use all of the information presented in our multiple dashboards in any way, just please remember to let folks know where you got it.

Until next time, from everyone at the Center, we wish you and yours all of the best.

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