Ports & Terminals

Forbes: Gulf Coast Home To Decade’s Two Fastest-Growing Major Ports

Forbes Magazine closed out 2023 by releasing its top 10 list of fastest-growing major U.S. ports over the last decade, based on percentage growth of cargo value. Atop the list are two Gulf Coast ports, with the Port of Corpus Christi, Texas, ranked first, followed by the Port of Mobile, Alabama’s only deepwater port.

Over the past decade, the Port of Corpus Christi’s annual cargo valuation has grown an astonishing 238.33 percent. That growth is driven overwhelming by oil and gas exports, Forbes found, with imports over the same time period dropping by 63.3 percent. That places Corpus Christi among the 10 worst-performing ports in terms of imports since 2013.

Ranking second in terms of annual cargo value growth is the Port of Mobile, with 121.84 percent change over the past decade. That growth has been driven by the buildout of the port’s container terminal and activity at its coal export terminal, among other factors.

“From Mobile to Huntsville, Alabama’s economy is booming, and the port is proud to be a key player in this growth,” said John Driscoll, director and CEO of the Alabama Port Authority. “With over $1 billion in capital investments planned over the next 10 years and the benefits of major projects, such as the deepening and widening of the ship channel, yet to be realized, the sky is the limit for what the port and the state of Alabama will accomplish in the coming years.”

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The Port of Beaumont, also located on the Gulf Coast and along the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway, ranked 10th on the list, with 72.25 percent growth over the past decade.

The Forbes survey examined all types of ports of entry in the United States, including airports and land crossings. Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport ranked third, followed by Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport and Cleveland’s Hopkins International Airport. Land crossings on the list include Port Laredo and the Port of Eagle Pass in Texas and the border crossing at Otay Mesa, Calif.

The Port of Savannah, Ga., which ranked seventh with 78.07 percent growth over the past decade, was the only East Coast port on the list.