Progreso, Yucatán — The Ministry of Economic Development urged dredging at the Puerto de Altura de Progreso, which could otherwise become obsolete.
Dredging would accommodate tankers delivering natural gas from Houston and factories in Yucatán would benefit from reduced energy costs, said Ernesto Herrera Novelo. Natural gas from Texas would save factories about one-third of their energy bills, he estimated.
Herrera Novelo was inspired by a recent tour of the Panama Canal, where a 2016 expansion has doubled its volume.
“Why do we invest in the post? Because if we don’t it will become obsolete,” he said, adding that planning should project 25 years into the future. “We can see that Panama already has larger ships.”
An immediate economic gain would be realized by accommodating bigger vessels, he said.
“In order for the gas to arrive and ships with greater capacities to enter, dredging has to be done, said Herrera Novelo, noting that larger ships deliver gas under more economical terms.
He said that a production system with natural gas in Yucatán will guarantee the sustainability of the environment while letting Yucatecan manufacturers operate on a more favorable cost basis.
Dredging will improve Yucatán’s infrastructure, making the state more competitive and more attractive for investment.
“It is of the utmost importance to bet on modernization of the Port of Altura de Progreso to guarantee the conditions of logistic competitiveness in line with the manufacturing industry established in the last five years and boost its growth,” said Ernesto Herrera.
During a recent visit to Panama, the official saw new locks in its famous canal, built to allow larger-capacity ships to circulate. That, he said, represented a clear signal that in Yucatán, larger ships must be able to dock here to make Progreso a competitive logistics center.