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Va port: Panama Canal expansion impact minimal

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By BROCK VERGAKIS
Associated Press

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) - The executive director of the Virginia Port Authority says the expansion of the Panama Canal to accommodate larger ships will only have a modest impact on East Coast ports.

John Reinhart made the comments at a gathering of the International Association of Maritime Economists in Norfolk on Wednesday.

Once completed at the end of 2015, the Panama Canal will be able to handle much larger ships from Asia that typically go to West Coast ports in the U.S. now.

Reinhart says he doesn't expect the East Coast to get a lot of cargo currently going to the West Coast, but competition among East Coast ports may become greater.

He says some of the large cargo ships are already arriving at East Coast ports by traveling through the Suez Canal.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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