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State port signs agreement with Panama Canal

GULFPORT — The Port of Gulfport and the Panama Canal Authority have signed an agreement that will allow for joint marketing ventures, information sharing and technological exchange.

Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, Panama Canal Authority administrator Alberto Aleman Zubieta and Port Authority at Gulfport executive director Donald Allee participated in yesterday’s announcement in Panama City.

Barbour says the memorandum of understanding would lead to increased economic growth, spur international trade and promote the “all-water route” from Asia to the U.S. East and Gulf coasts by way of the Panama Canal.

In 2009, Panama was Mississippi’s third largest trading partner, in terms of exports, after Canada and Mexico.

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