More than 90 percent of global trade moves by ship. The cargos they carry include a whole host of products most people take for granted. And yet they're a part of our everyday lives.
Check the labels on your clothes. Where were they manufactured? China? Zambia? Indonesia? Have you ever stopped to wonder how so many fresh fruits are now available off-season? And what about the car you drive? Or your TV set. Your DVD player. That bottle of wine or perfume or beer you opened the other day.
All these goods – and so many more – enter (and leave) our country through the gateways we call ports. The Port of New York and New Jersey is the largest port on the East Coast of North America, and the third-largest in our nation, behind only Los Angeles and Long Beach, CA. Our port has allowed the New York City region to blossom into one of the most affluent consumer districts in the country, and therefore the world.
Businesses clamor to locate here, hoping to reap the windfall of profits that being close to the port can bring. In doing so, these enterprises support more than 279,200 jobs representing nearly $12 billion in annual wages. Many of these jobs are allotted to increasingly-scarce high-quality skilled trades. Meanwhile the port generates more than $5 billion in annual tax revenues to state and local governments.