New Orleans Port, CN Railway To Expand Container Traffic
NEW ORLEANS – The Port of New Orleans and CN (TSX: CNR) (NYSE: CN) signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) last week that will see the parties develop greater supply chain efficiencies aimed at drawing more container traffic through the Port to North American markets.
“We and our Port of New Orleans gateway partners have a mutual interest in ensuring the competitive and efficient movement of container goods through the gateway and growing its market share,” said JJ Ruest, CN’s executive vice president and chief marketing officer. “This MOU will help us advance that agenda.”
“We are pleased to build upon our long-standing relationship with CN,” said Gary LaGrange, Port President and CEO. “This MOU reflects a genuine interest in mutually developing better service that will help us capture greater market share and optimize throughput, with the ultimate goal of providing the best service possible to our customers.”
The Port of New Orleans has an intermodal rail terminal adjacent to its Napoleon Avenue Container Terminal providing on-dock access for all rail shipments. The new Mississippi River Intermodal Terminal is currently under construction. The US $25.1-million project, when completed in the first quarter of 2016, will result in a modern, efficient intermodal container transfer terminal located within the container yard, offering on-dock access and improving CN’s link to the terminal and helping grow its container volumes.
The New Orleans Public Belt Railroad, a switching railroad with the primary mission of serving the Port of New Orleans and local industries, and New Orleans Terminal LLC, an operator of the Napoleon Avenue Container Terminal, also signed the CN-Port MOU.
“The New Orleans Public Belt is excited about the efficiency gains the new intermodal terminal will provide,” said New Orleans Public Belt General Manager Jeff Davis. “New Orleans is a natural rail gateway and we look forward to growing business with the CN.”
Ruest concluded, “The expanded Panama Canal is expected to offer greater freight traffic opportunities to the Gulf Coast. The implementation of this service agreement should help the Port of New Orleans take advantage of rising trade between Asia and North America, as well as North and South America.”
The Port of New Orleans is a deep-draft multipurpose port at the center of the world’s busiest port system — Louisiana’s Lower Mississippi River. Connected to major inland markets and Canada via 14,500 miles of waterways, six class-1 railroads and the interstate highway system, the Port is the ideal gateway for steel, project cargo, containers, coffee, natural rubber, chemicals, forest products, manufactured goods and cruising. An extensive network of ocean carrier services, along with added-value services like transloading of bulk into containers, make the Port of New Orleans the superior logistics solution for many types of cargo. To stay ahead of market demand, the Port has invested more than $100 million in capital improvement projects since 2012 and has a Master Plan to expand the Napoleon Avenue Container Terminal to an annual capacity of 1.6 million TEUs.
CN transports approximately C$250 billion worth of goods annually for a wide range of business sectors, ranging from resource products to manufactured products to consumer goods, across a rail network spanning Canada and mid-America. CN – Canadian National Railway Company, along with its operating railway subsidiaries — serves the cities and ports of Vancouver, Prince Rupert, B.C., Montreal, Halifax, New Orleans, and Mobile, Ala., and the metropolitan areas of Toronto, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Calgary, Chicago, Memphis, Detroit, Duluth, Minn./Superior, Wis., and Jackson, Miss., with connections to all points in North America.