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Port Of Seattle Sees Business Sail Past To Tacoma

Liz Jones
07/05/2012

This week, Port of Seattle officials watched one of their key customers sail right on by. A group of cargo ships is now heading to a new home port in Tacoma.

TRANSCRIPT

With two ports as close as Seattle and Tacoma, rivalry is part of the game. So, when the Port of Seattle recently lost a big shipping contract to Tacoma, it stung.

Skaggs: "There's disappointment on our end that we lost."

Charla Skaggs is with the Port of Seattle.

Skaggs: "It represents a significant percentage of our cargo."

About 20 percent.

Skaggs: "So, without a doubt, it's a loss. We believe we'll be able to replace that cargo and we're working to do that right now." The contract is with a trio of shipping lines called the Grand Alliance. Skaggs says she not sure what gave Tacoma the advantage this time, but she can guess it was money.

Skaggs: "Certainly shipping lines and shippers always say cost is a factor. And we know that particularly in these difficult economic times they are looking to save money wherever they can."

As to what this switch–up means for workers at the Port of Seattle, Skaggs says she's unsure. She points out longshoreman will still be needed to unload these ships, just now, in Tacoma.

I'm Liz Jones, KUOW News.

© Copyright 2012, KUOW

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