PANAMA. The blog Daily Focus says the $5. 25 billion expansion of the Panama Canal that will be awarded to one of three international c...
PANAMA. The blog Daily Focus says the $5. 25 billion expansion of the Panama Canal that will be awarded to one of three international construction conglomerates, including one led by San Francisco-based Bechtel Corp. , Mitsubishi Corp. and Hochtief Agand at the end of July, is already raising concern in California.
The expansion, which will take at least five years to complete and may double the canal’s capacity, will go forward despite a projected 9 percent decrease in global shipping, a result of the global economic crisis, said the blog.
The widening of the canal is already causing unease in southern California, where more than half a million jobs are tied to shipping with East Asia. At present, 70 percent of cargo from Asia is unloaded in California and distributed overland. Panama hopes to capture much of this trade through the expansion, which will accommodate ships capable of carrying three times more cargo than current capacity.
In response, US ports have already begun to announce investments in their own infrastructure, said the Daily Focus.