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Louisiana International Terminal Secures $800M Toward Planned $1.8B Facility

The Port of New Orleans has received $800 million in funding from Ports American and Mediterranean Shipping Company investment arm, Terminal Investment Limited (TiL).

The funds will be going toward a planned $1.8 billion container facility on the Lower Mississippi River. Construction of the terminal will also be supported by the Port of New Orleans as well as state and federal funding. The joint venture will operate the terminal, which will be capable of handling 2 million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) annually.

“This public-private partnership with the Port of New Orleans, TiL and Ports America has the potential to become one of the most impactful economic development projects in our state’s history,” said Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards in a news release. “It leverages the economic power of our greatest natural resource — the Mississippi River — and enhances Louisiana’s ability to attract new investment from companies competing in the global marketplace.”

The Louisiana International Terminal project will entail a 350-acre container facility with a 3,500-linear-foot wharf on more than 1,000 acres. The plans will leverage the deeper, 50-foot Lower Mississippi River Ship Channel and help vessels to avoid height restrictions from Mississippi River bridges farther up the river, according to officials.

With an estimated opening in 2028, the project aims to serve vessels of all sizes, including extra-large container ships.

“We are very excited to announce this partnership that will strengthen Port of New Orleans competitiveness, making it a key facility in the Gulf of Mexico,” Tom Van Eynde, TiL investment director for North America, said in a statement. “… The container trade at the port mainly consists of export cargo, making it an exception among U.S. ports, which are usually import-heavy.”

Van Eynde also stated that the terminal will attract new container trades by providing cost-competitive shipping options for local industries.

He went on to say, “The development of this facility cements TiL’s commitment to further strengthen American infrastructure, making the Port of New Orleans accessible for larger vessels and increasing its throughput capacity in a sustainable way that will bring measurable benefits to the community.”