Norfolk – The Port of Virginia will be the first US East Coast stop on a reworked vessel service operated by Mediterranean Shipping Co. (MSC) that will bring more import cargo from South America to Virginia.
"This is significant because MSC reworked its East Coast port rotation in favor of Virginia," said Rodney Oliver, interim executive director of the Virginia Port Authority. "That rotation will allow us to capture import cargo, which is of great benefit to the cargo owners because they can get it on their shelves and out to the consumer faster.
"The service also stops at three Caribbean ports, which gives us the opportunity to go after some new business."
The weekly service is called South America East Coast Service String 1, and its East Coast port rotation includes, in this order: Virginia, New York, Baltimore and Savannah. When it leaves the US it will stop in Freeport, Bahamas, and then head back to South America.
The first vessel should call Virginia in mid-October. Vessels being used in the service will range in size from 4,500 TEUs to 5,000 TEUs.
The announcement was made on Tuesday, Sept. 25, at the regularly-scheduled meeting of the Virginia Port Authority Board of Commissioners.