Florida Seaport Business is Booming

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) -- Florida's seaports are booming.

The Florida Ports Council released a five-year mission plan Friday. It shows Florida continues to lead the nation in cruise operations while waterborne cargo increased 18.2 percent to $82.7 billion in 2011.

Florida's ports moved 100 million tons and three million 20-foot equivalent containers of cargo last year.

The 15 seaports contributed to Florida's record year for international trade -- $149 billion.

Florida's $6.3 billion annual cruise industry handled 13.5 million passengers in 2011, accounting for 60 percent of all U.S. embarkations.

Port Miami, Port Everglades and Port Canaveral lead the nation in cruise passengers.

Other Florida seaports are in Pensacola, Panama City, Port St. Joe, Fernandina Beach, Jacksonville, Citrus County, Tampa, St. Petersburg, Manatee County, Fort Pierce, Palm Beach County and Key West.

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