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Thread: Wider Panama Canal Would Aid Chinese

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    Default Wider Panama Canal Would Aid Chinese

    Wider Panama Canal Would Aid Chinese
    Human Events Online ^ | Sep 05, 2006 | Jerome Corsi



    Panama is planning to build a deeper, wider Panama Canal to allow Communist Chinese super-containerships carrying cheap 21st century slave-labor under-market goods to have direct access to the Gulf of Mexico and key NAFTA/CAFTA ports such as Miami.


    In the shipping industry, Panamex container ships are defined as those that are able to fit through the 1,000-foot long and 110-foot wide canal. Typically, Panamex containerships were designed to carry 4,500 TEU (“Twenty Foot Units,” the length measurement of the standard ocean steel container). The first generation of post-Panamex container ships was built to carry up to 9,800 TEU. Today, a new class of super-post-Panamex vessels is under construction, designed to carry up to 12,500 TEU.


    Panama President Martin Torrijos has decided to put to referendum a $6 billion project to build new locks in the Panama Canal sufficiently deep and wide to accommodate post-Panamex ships. President Bush, when visiting Panama during November 2005, supported the plan to expand and modernize the Panama Canal, a plan now estimated to cost $10 billion. Critics such as the Council on Hemispheric Affairs have argued that the cost of expanding the Panama Canal could be as high as $25 billion. As we have noted previously, port operations at both ends of the Panama Canal are already being operated by the Communist Chinese company Hutchinson Ports.


    In 2003, west coast ports handled approximately 80% of the more than $100 billion imported from China, with Atlantic ports accounting for about 19% and Gulf Coast ports picking up the extra 1%. As noted by Michael Bomba of the Center for Transportation Research at the University of Texas at Austin, “the volume of Chinese import trade handled by East Coast ports has more than doubled between 2000 and 2003, with the largest jump occurring in 2002, when shippers began to search for alternative routes.” In the shipping industry, the Longshoreman Union’s west coast strike is widely quoted as a reason importers of goods from China have sought to open up Mexican ports and a variety of east coast ports (including New York, Newark, and the Port of Virginia centered on Norfolk) as an alternative ports of entry.


    In 1998, the state of Florida created FTAA Florida Inc., a 501(c)(6) non-profit corporation primarily to promote Miami’s bid to become the headquarters of a planned FTAA secretariat. Governor Jeb Bush sits on the FTAA Florida Inc. board and the Florida legislature funds half of the organization’s annual $1.3 million budget. As recently as the Fourth Summit of the Americas held at Mar de Plata in Argentina in November 2005, the Bush Administration has continued to push for reviving a Free Trade Area of the Americas initiative.


    Describing CAFTA as a “stepping stone toward FTAA, the Port of Miami’s website describes the port as the “Cargo Gateway of the Americas.” Even though the website emphasizes that “the conventional wisdom is that the increased volume will mainly be U.S. exports,” the text acknowledges the importance to the Port of Miami of imports from Asia:


    The shift in Asian trade to East Coast ports via all-water routes through the Suez and Panama canals, however, resulted in the Far East being the fastest-growing region for the port in 2005, reflecting an increase of 34.96% over fiscal 2004. Trade with Asian countries represented 22.71% of the total tonnage handled at the Port of Miami during 2005, second only to South America, which accounted for 23.42% of total trade.


    Even as port improvements in Miami are being billed as preparing for NAFTA, CAFTA, and FTAA, the driving force is the steadily increasing flood of imports anticipated from China. The true winner of NAFTA, CAFTA, and FTAA (should it ever come to be) is China, not Mexico or Honduras, or any other NAFTA, CAFTA, or FTAA trade partner. The day under-market goods made by 21st century slave labor in China are restricted from entry into the U.S. market is the day the enthusiasm for super-post-Panamex containerships in Miami will collapse.
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    Default Re: Wider Panama Canal Would Aid Chinese

    Describing CAFTA as a “stepping stone toward FTAA, the Port of Miami’s website describes the port as the “Cargo Gateway of the Americas.” Even though the website emphasizes that “the conventional wisdom is that the increased volume will mainly be U.S. exports,” the text acknowledges the importance to the Port of Miami of imports from Asia:
    If you have studied the NAU new super Highway it start in Mexico and runs nrth and east as far as TN. Now my question is why will would anyone want to use posts like LA or eastern posts when goods can be trucked up through Mexico using cheap labor and cheap trucking companies. There will be no need to pay the high rates of US workers another method of destorying this country. Thats my two cents.

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