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North Carolina State Ports Authority weathering economic storm

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Despite tough economic times, North Carolina State Ports Authority leaders say they are doing well. CEO, Tom Eagar, gave his annual address today. He said the ports authority is in a strong financial position right now. His overall message was that the state's ports are weathering the storm. He addressed members of the Cape Fear Chapter of the North Carolina World Trade Organization. Eagar said the Port of Wilmington continues to expand and plans are moving forward for the international terminal in Southport. The authority has taken some hits, especially with the housing market slump, since many of its key commodities are part of that industry. "The ports reflect the economy of North Carolina. Lumber is down, wood pulp is down, aggregates are down, steel is down, those are all issues of concern, but even in a down market there is opportunity," said Eagar. Eagar added that they expect continued growth in the amount of containers moving through the Port of Wilmington, although it might not be as much as in the past. Despite an expected decline in some key cargoes, the ports authority is expecting a positive fiscal year in 2009.

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