Seaway cargo shipments down 7 percent - The Buffalo News

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Seaway cargo shipments down 7 percent

Cargo shipments on the St. Lawrence Seaway are down 7 percent from a year ago, but one official predicts more activity in the final two months of the season.

The St. Lawrence Seaway Development Corp. said about 28 million metric tons of cargo were shipped from March 22 through October, compared to about 30 million in the same period in 2012. Shipments of iron ore, the largest individual category of cargo, were down 12.5 percent from a year ago.

“Although the binational waterway figures are still below last year’s levels, we’re seeing solid evidence that the final two months of the 2013 navigation season will be extremely busy for our shipping industry,” said Rebecca Spruill, director of trade development at the Washington, D.C.-based SLSDC. The Seaway typically closes in the final days of December.

The Canada-based St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corp. said cargo shipments on the Welland Canal section of the Seaway dropped 3 percent, compared to the 13 percent drop on the Montreal-Lake Ontario section. The number of transits on the Welland Canal segment declined 3.3 percent; a transit refers to a vessel’s passage through one or more of the canal’s locks.

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