Governor Ivey Announces the Port of Mobile’s Nearly $100 Billion Impact on Alabama’s Economy
MONTGOMERY – Governor Kay Ivey on Thursday in an event with the Port Authority, announced the Port of Mobile’s economic impact on Alabama’s economy totals a whopping $98.3 billion, an increase of roughly $13 billion from the previous year’s impact.
The Alabama Port Authority commissioned the economic impact report, which covers calendar year 2022 (the most recent year that full data is available), showing that the tremendous growth at the Port once again provided a major benefit to all 67 Alabama counties.
Overall, the report showed that – in addition to the overall $98.3 billion statewide economic impact – the Port supports 351,359 jobs in Alabama, one out of every 7 jobs statewide.
These jobs amount to $22.5 billion in income for Alabamians across all 67 counties.
Additionally, in 2022 alone, the Port and its related industries gave back $2.4 billion in taxes to the state, local governments, and the federal government.
“While our Gulf Coast port might be called ‘The Port of Mobile,’ what the staggering economic impact number of $98 billion means is that it is really ‘The Port of Alabama,’” said Governor Ivey.“Whether it’s our booming automotive industry, exports of natural resources such as coal and limestone and countless other Alabama-made and Alabama-sourced goods, the Port of Mobile touches every corner and every industry in our state. The future is bright for our port, and I look forward to seeing its growth continue to contribute and impact all of Alabama.”
“Alabama’s port has had tremendous growth – and we’re just getting started,” said Alabama Port Authority Director and CEO John Driscoll. “These impact numbers show both the benefit of Alabama’s port to our entire state, and the key role of state investments in helping achieve that growth. With more than $1 billion in capital projects underway, we expect this growth to continue, and more importantly, keep making Alabama businesses more competitive globally.”
“The Port of Mobile is an economic powerhouse for the state of Alabama, and it is growing bigger and stronger every single day,” said Senator Greg Reed (R-Jasper), President Pro Tem of the Alabama Senate. “With coal being one of the largest exports of the port, and my district being the state’s largest producer of coal – the success of the coal industry in Alabama and the Port of Mobile are inextricably linked. I’m a proud supporter of the port and its mission, and I’m pleased but not surprised to see the incredible economic impact it has on our great state.”
“Geographically, my home district couldn’t be much further from the Port of Mobile, but the port’s impact on my district – and virtually all of my members’ districts in the Alabama House – is very present,” said Alabama State House Speaker Nathaniel Ledbetter. “It’s clear that our commitment to investing in the Port is netting remarkable returns for our state, and it’s vital we continue to support this economic engine for Alabama’s continued success.”
The Port currently has more than $1 billion in capital projects underway statewide. The Port Authority will expand its capabilities to one million TEUs (twenty-foot equivalent unit cargo container) upon completing the Phase IV expansion at the container terminal. In addition to the terminal expansion and the harbor deepening and widening project, the Alabama Port Authority plans to develop logistics facilities in Mobile and open a new inland intermodal facility served by CSX in Montgomery, Ala. These projects are set to begin operation within the next two years and will provide new advantages and opportunities for shippers.
Other planned investments include constructing a fly-over bridge to create on-dock rail access at the container terminal, modernizing general cargo piers, and developing an inland intermodal facility in North Alabama. These projects are primarily funded through federal budget appropriations and grants championed by former Senator Richard Shelby. In addition to federal funding, the Alabama State Legislature allocated $20 million in 2023 to modernize the Port’s McDuffie Coal Terminal. Beyond these public funding sources, the Port reinvests all revenue outside of operating expenses in improving and expanding its facilities.
Following the enactment of the Rebuild Alabama Act, which provided funding to deepen and widen the Port of Mobile’s ship channel, the Port’s economic impact in Alabama has increased by more than $200 billion. Additionally, the Port’s planned Intermodal Container Transfer Facility in Montgomery has resulted in $2.2 billion of new project announcements in the area. Notably, both of these milestones were reached before the completion of the projects.
This economic study was once again conducted by Martin Associates, an internationally-recognized economic and transportation consulting firm that specializes in the analysis of the transportation and logistics industry. The report, which includes both public Alabama Port Authority facilities as well as private operators utilizing the port, is designed to be rigorous and conservative in its analysis. Notably, Martin Associates identified containerized cargo as the most significant new line of business driving the Port’s rapid growth.
This analysis is separate from and independent of a recent analysis in Forbes, which ranked the Port of Mobile the second fastest growing port of entry into the United States over the past decade, ahead of Chicago’s O’Hare Airport and Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson Airport.
A full report, as well as additional information including the Alabama Port Authority’s economic impact by legislative districts or counties, is available online at www.alportsimpact.com.
The full photo album of Governor Ivey’s announcement can be viewed here:
Gina Maiola, Communications Director
Office of Governor Kay Ivey