Chinese reps to visit for Delaware port discussion

(WHYY/Newsworks)

(WHYY/Newsworks)

A group of businessmen and Chinese government officials are schedule to talk about the future expansion of the Port of Wilmington.

New Castle County Executive Tom Gordon has been touting the potential job creation of a new port along the Delaware River throughout his reelection campaign. Now, just one day before the Democratic primary vote, Gordon’s office has announced a visit later this month from a Chinese delegation also interested in the port expansion project.

“I have been behind this project because of the thousands of jobs that would be created as a result of these initiatives,” Gordon said in a press release. “It simply boils down to the fact that Delaware is geographically blessed beyond comparison for maritime growth.”

The Chinese delegation is scheduled to visit Delaware from Sept. 23-30. The group will be made up of government representatives and members of a variety of Chinese companies including the Chinese Ocean Shipping Company, which is the largest dry bulk container carrier in China. COSCO is also one of the largest dry bulk shipping operators in the world.

“We look forward to receiving more documents about the project and to starting it as soon as possible,” writes the delegation’s representative from the China Gezhouba Group in a letter released by New Castle County.

Earlier this year, Gordon claimed the number of jobs that could be added in Delaware as a result of the port expansion would be in the tens of thousands. And he’s been pushing for the expansion for a long time. In a 2014 statement at a forum with the Longshoreman’s union, Gordon said, “I guarantee that if we add thousands of jobs, you’ll reduce the crime in the City of Wilmington 80 to 90 percent.”

But it’s that kind of comment that views the port expansion as a panacea for the county’s economic challenges that’s drawn criticism from Gordon’s opponent in the Democratic primary. Matt Meyer’s economic plan also touts the potential of an expanded ports, but with some caution. “There is the potential to create thousands of jobs, but we need to have a strong, sustainable plan and a reliable funding partner,” Meyer said in his economic development plan.

Meyer and Gordon sparred over the port’s potential during an August debate. “The port of Wilmington has been three months away for four years,” Meyer said, questioning the Gordon’s timetable.

“There’s going to be a container port at the new port,” Gordon insisted. “Nobody is going to pass us to go to New York with the Longshoreman, with the workforce that we have, and the transportation system. That’s a fact.”

 

Democratic voters will decide who will be on the November ballot in Tuesday’s primary. The winner of the Gordon/Meyer Democratic primary will face the winner of the Republican primary which pits Mark Blake against Barry Nahe. 

 

New Castle County Executive Tom Gordon has been touting the potential job creation of a new port along the Delaware River throughout his reelection campaign. Now, just one day before the Democratic primary vote, Gordon’s office has announced a visit later this month from a Chinese delegation also interested in the port expansion project.

“I have been behind this project because of the thousands of jobs that would be created as a result of these initiatives,” Gordon said in a press release. “It simply boils down to the fact that Delaware is geographically blessed beyond comparison for maritime growth.”

The Chinese delegation is scheduled to visit Delaware from Sept. 23-30. The group will be made up of government representatives and members of a variety of Chinese companies including the Chinese Ocean Shipping Company, which is the largest dry bulk container carrier in China. COSCO is also one of the largest dry bulk shipping operators in the world.

“We look forward to receiving more documents about the project and to starting it as soon as possible,” writes the delegation’s representative from the China Gezhouba Group in a letter released by New Castle County.

Earlier this year, Gordon claimed the number of jobs that could be added in Delaware as a result of the port expansion would be in the tens of thousands. And he’s been pushing for the expansion for a long time. In a 2014 statement at a forum with the Longshoreman’s union, Gordon said, “I guarantee that if we add thousands of jobs, you’ll reduce the crime in the City of Wilmington 80 to 90 percent.”

But it’s that kind of comment that views the port expansion as a panacea for the county’s economic challenges that’s drawn criticism from Gordon’s opponent in the Democratic primary. Matt Meyer’s economic plan also touts the potential of an expanded ports, but with some caution. “There is the potential to create thousands of jobs, but we need to have a strong, sustainable plan and a reliable funding partner,” Meyer said in his economic development plan.

Meyer and Gordon sparred over the port’s potential during an August debate. “The port of Wilmington has been three months away for four years,” Meyer said, questioning the Gordon’s timetable. “There’s going to be a container port at the new port,” Gordon insisted. “Nobody is going to pass us to go to New York with the Longshoreman, with the workforce that we have, and the transportation system. That’s a fact.”

Democratic voters will decide who will be on the November ballot in Tuesday’s primary. The winner of the Gordon/Meyer Democratic primary will face the winner of the Republican primary which pits Mark Blake against Barry Nahe. 

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