Skip to content

News Release
FOR RELEASE - March 26, 2019
Contact: Aaron Ellis, Public Affairs Director,
(703) 684-5700

American Association of Port Authorities
Phone: (202) 792-4033

4th Annual ‘Western Hemisphere Ports Day’ Slated For April 5

Event recognizes port authority contributions to jobs and the economy

The American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA) – the unified and recognized voice of seaports in the Americas - and its entire hemispheric membership will commemorate Western Hemisphere Ports Day on April 5 again this year. The annual event recognizes the port industry’s role in creating jobs and propelling the economy in nations they serve across the Americas.

This year’s Ports Day theme is titled, Celebrating Our Workforce. It’s in recognition of the skill, professionalism and commitment of the port industry workforce … the many hundreds of thousands of people who ensure that cargo and passengers move efficiently through Western Hemisphere ports every day.

In a new economic impacts report for U.S. coastal ports released on March 20 by Martin Associates, Lancaster, Pa., the number of family-sustaining jobs that America’s ports support rose from 23.1 million in 2014 to 30.8 million in 2018, with average annual salaries now at $62,800 … up from $53,723 just five years ago. Of those nearly 31 million jobs, more than 650,000 are directly generated by cargo and vessel activity at U.S. ports.

Ports throughout the hemisphere are honoring the occasion in different ways … from photo contests and creating ‘Ports Day’ t-shirts for staff to wear, to posting messages on social media of their economic and job contributions to their region.

“While recognizing the value that seaports play in our daily lives, Ports Day is also an opportunity to remind policymakers that ports need national support to be successful in facilitating the movement of trade that links all of us to the global economy,” said Kurt Nagle, AAPA’s president and CEO. “While we always encourage folks to think about the role ports play in their life, their community and the economy, Ports Day is a special occasion to focus on the role of ports. Please use the hashtags #PortsUnited and #PortsDeliver when posting your thoughts about ports on social media.”

According to IHS Markit’s World Trade Service, combined international sea trade moving through Western Hemisphere ports in 2017 totaled 4.303 billion metric tons in volume and US$2.675 trillion in value. Of that total, ports in Central and South America handled 1.741 billion metric tons of cargo valued at US$1.024 trillion, while North American ports handled 1.90 billion metric tons of goods, valued at US$2.305 trillion.

“It doesn’t matter if you live near a seaport or a thousand miles away from one,” stressed Mr. Nagle, “the products you depend on and goods your nation exports primarily move through ports. Without ports, our lives would be radically different.

“As the unified voice of seaports in the Americas, AAPA is proud to recognize the contributions of our member port authorities as we celebrate Western Hemisphere Ports Day,” he said. “I hope you’ll join us.”

For more information about Western Hemisphere Ports Day, click here

# # #