Port Authority Board OKs Second Cargo Vessel For Struggling Route

The Fortunagracht docked at the Port of Cleveland. A second ship is being worked out (pic: Brian Bull)
The Fortunagracht docked at the Port of Cleveland. A second ship is being worked out (pic: Brian Bull)

Last week, the Port Authority Board authorized a second cargo vessel to the trans-Atlantic route, despite lower-than-expected revenues. Since starting in April, the enterprise has lost 3 million dollars and the current ship - the Fortunagracht – has yet to be filled to full capacity.

The Port’s Belgian partner, the Spliethoff Group, says it’ll cover the costs of the second ship.

David Gutheil is Vice President of Maritime and Logistics for the Port of Cleveland. He says formal board approval is expected in December or January.

“We still have to get the details of the agreement worked out with Spliethoff," explains Gutheil. "But the idea right now and the goal and the situation is we are going to a two-a month vessel service. That will start sailing probably in late March or early April, next year.”

Gutheil says the move followed input from customers and potential customers that they needed a second vessel to really fire up interest.

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