Ports of Vancouver and Portland
by Associated Press
PORTLAND, Ore. -- The ports of Portland and Vancouver, Wash., appear ready to collaborate on marketing and land development efforts so they can attract more business along the Columbia River.
Details of the possible agreement are few, but the ports would set marketing and development goals and meet at least four times each year.
The Port of Vancouver commissioners will consider the agreement at their Tuesday meeting and Port of Portland commissioners meet Wednesday.
"We want to work together to keep business on our river," Maureen Chan-Hefflin, a spokeswoman for the Port of Vancouver, told The Oregonian. "There are some things we compete against Portland on, but mostly we tend to compete against other regions, like Puget Sound or California."
Alastair Smith, the Port of Vancouver's senior director for marketing and operations, said the ports could jointly develop distribution centers on Vancouver's side of the river. Ships could unload in Portland, taking advantage of the port's costly container cranes, and products could be trucked to Vancouver.
The potential collaboration comes weeks after the Port of Portland announced it would eliminate 81 jobs, almost 10 percent of its work force, because two major shipping companies quit the port.
Hyundai Merchant Marine pulled out last month and "K" Line America plans to leave in December. That will leave Hanjin Shipping as the Port's only trans-Pacific container carrier.
The loss of the carriers has put pressure on the Port from importer-exporters frustrated at the lack of shipping opportunities in Portland.
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