Port of Tampa sees steel imports rebounding

Feb 15, 2012 | 02:48 PM | Catherine Ngai

Tags  port of Tampa, Richard Wainio, pipe, steel imports, construction, containers, Panama Canal, catherine ngai

TAMPA, Fla. — Low steel import volumes coupled with a lagging construction sector has depressed Florida’s economy in recent years, but that downturn seems to be changing course, according to Richard Wainio, chief executive officer and director of the Tampa Port Authority.

"Florida is somewhat different than most of the states because it is highly dependent on its residential construction sector. We’ve seen a huge decline in our residential construction sector, and that has caused steel imports to disappear," Wainio told AMM.

During the height of Florida’s construction market, the port brought in some 462,518 net tons of steel in 2006, according to port data. But those numbers fell dramatically as a result of the economic downturn, Wainio said, citing fiscal 2010 imports of 36,581 tons.....





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