Elected officials joined Massachusetts Port Authority and other maritime officials in welcoming China Ocean Shipping Company (COSCO) its maiden voyage into the Port of Boston today. At an inaugural ceremony marking the new service from the Far East, Senator Robert Havern greeted COSCO's president, Captain Wei Jiafu at Conley Terminal in South Boston. Havern and Wei were joined by Massport's Director of the Port, Mike Leone as well as many Chinese dignitaries, COSCO officials, local importers, exporters and members of the International Longshoreman's Association.
COSCO and its partners K- Line (Japan) and Yang Ming (Tawain) will deploy a weekly vessel from the Far East to Boston where cargo will be unloaded and new cargo destined for points East will be loaded. Previous to this, cargo bound for New England traveled via other ports such as New York /New Jersey to be offloaded before it was trucked, barged or railed to Boston.
The new pendulum service will consist of 12 vessels offering weekly service from Asia to the United States and Europe. The port rotation is as follows: Tokyo, Quingdao, Shanghai, Yantian, Hong Kong, ( Panama Canal) Charleston, Norfolk, New York, Boston, Valencia, Naples, Barcelona, New York, Charleston, (Panama Canal), Tokyo, Quingdao, Shanghai.
Top imports in the Port of Boston include: footwear, toys, furniture and plastic products while top exports include waste paper, lumber, household goods and fabric.
In recent years, Massport has invested more than $100 million in infrastructure and operational improvements to the Port of Boston. The port's annual economic benefit to the region is estimated at more than $3 billion dollars and accounts for approximately 9,000 jobs.
The Port of Boston is currently served twice a week with direct inbound and outbound ocean service to Europe by Mediterranean Shipping Company, by feeder vessel from Halifax, Nova Scotia and barge service from Columbia Coastal Transport, New York.