Melbourne, Fla.—Port Canaveral is the world's second-busiest port, behind Port Miami— and is currently expanding its cruise, shipping, spaceport and recreation infrastructure. U.S. ports are feeling the economic pinch of the coronavirus pandemic, as lost cargo and cruiseship businesses coupled with increased expenses for health and safety protections are forcing furloughs, layoffs and postponements of port improvements. On the cargo side, cargo-dependent ports report not to have much financial flexibility to withstand an approximately 20 percent decrease in revenues. Large shipping losses have hit a record low, according to Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty SE’s (AGCS) Safety & Shipping Review 2020.
Port leaders issued an appeal to federal policymakers that while America’s seaports have been vitally important in supporting the nation’s response to the COVID pandemic keeping fuel, food and critical supplies moving throughout the country, these same ports are crucial to ensuring the United States is able to quickly recover from the current economic crisis.
On July 23, a coalition of ports asked Congress and the White House to include $1.5 billion to help ports whether the pandemic. They are seeking the emergency funding as part of the next Covid-19 financial package that is currently being developed, highlighting that no funding had been provided in previous emergency legislation to help ports and the maritime transportation system more generally. The money would help ports cover the costs of cleaning and supplies, personal protective equipment, staffing, cyber and facility security, as well as debt service payments. Ports also seek a change in the current CARES Act that would allow governors to provide funds to ports, which is currently not authorized under the Act.
An economic downturn study recently completed by Philadelphia-based BREA (Business Research and Economic Advisors) revealed in worst-case projections, Port Canaveral will have 79 percent loss of revenue passengers resulting in over $1.7 billion loss of total expenditures across Florida; 16,000 annualized jobs loss with over $560 million in lost wages; and, $46 million loss in state and local tax revenues.
Sadly, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the loss of cruise operations at Port Canaveral due to the Centers for Disease Control’s No-Sail Order for cruise lines has had a profound impact on the port and the local and extended tourism community, particularly the many small businesses including, local hotels, restaurants, and transportation companies. The projected negative economic implications for the entire Central Florida region and the State of Florida overall are profound.
Let us all hope for the best, understanding that help is on the way, as Americans we have gone through dark and difficult times before, and will find a way out of this, again.
Our truck insurance specialists in Melbourne, Florida also understand 18 wheeler operations, goals and safety concerns— and will help you find the best rates available in the market to keep your transportation business well protected, amid all the uncertainty caused by this global health emergency.
Give us a call for a FREE consultation at (321) 329-5556 and one of our local truck insurance specialists at Melbourne Truck Insurance will be more than happy to walk you through all of your options.
Call (407) 203-7085