If the Mexican government needed confirmation that the Punta Colonet mega-port would open well after the global economy had recovered, they got confirmation today. The (U.S.) National Retail Federation announced that the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach (Punta Colonet's competitors) will receive a stronger surge in imports than previously expected in the first half of 2010, rising as much as 28% over previous-year levels as the economic recovery continues to gather strength.
Imports into U.S. container ports are forecast to rise 25% during the first six months of the year compared with the year-earlier period. Earlier container cargo forecasts had been for lukewarm improvement at best for the first half of the year. Hackett Associates, which tracks monthly import data for major retailers, said that it has seen positive signs for the economy, including the fact that the record number of ships that were laid up or idled for lack of work last year has begun to drop substantially. Punta Colonet construction contracts are to be awarded this year.
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