The Panama Canal Expansion: The Impact on Logistics Strategies and Operations


When the Panama Canal expansion is completed in early 2016, it will effectively double the capacity of the canal and allow post-Panamax vessels to cross it. Meanwhile, East Coast ports are in the process of widening and deepening their channels and installing larger off-loading cranes to accommodate these larger vessels. What impact will this all have on logistics strategies and operations moving forward? According to research conducted by The Boston Consulting Group and C.H. Robinson, up to 10 percent of container traffic to the U.S. from East Asia could shift from West Coast ports to East Coast ports by 2020.

How will the Panama Canal expansion impact the decision-making process of shippers in terms of port selection? What factors do shippers need to consider? How will this shift from West Coast to East Coast ports impact rail and trucking operations? Which ports are in the best position to gain volume and why? How will changes in energy prices and economic conditions impact the projected shift? What actions should shippers take today to prepare effectively?

In this episode, two of the study authors — Sri Laxmana, director of ocean services at C.H. Robinson, and Jennifer Bratton, partner and managing director in the Minneapolis office of The Boston Consulting Group — address those questions and more in this timely and important episode.

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