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176 Concord Street, P.O. Box 22287, Charleston, SC 29413-2287
Contact: Erin Dhand, Manager, Corporate Communications and Community Affairs
Telephone: 843-577-8121 • Fax: 843-577-8127 • e-mail:


Forest Products Trade Increases

Charleston, SC - With nearly three million tons of forest products crossing its piers over the past year, the Port of Charleston continues to be a major player in the forest products trade.

In a recent 12-month period, Charleston moved 2.8 million tons of paper, paper products, woodpulp and lumber products. The volume was overwhelmingly export, with outbound shipments comprising 70% of volume and paper products leading the way.

Charleston features approximately 40 liner carriers serving 140 countries, so it's not surprising that 90% of the port's forest products business is containerized. Even so, the percentage of breakbulk forest products continues to rise as a result of several major initiatives.

The South Carolina State Ports Authority Board recently directed management to shelve commercial redevelopment plans for portions of Union Pier Terminal in downtown Charleston, a move that provides additional warehousing space for longer-term transloading service agreements.

Charleston currently features more than 1.5 million square of warehouse and transit shed space, including rail siding and access to both Norfolk Southern and CSX railroads at all warehouses. The Ports Authority is an operating port, allowing it to offer flexible, competitive transloading services.

Another valued-added service is bar-coded information exchange systems for inventory tracking. Charleston is developing a port-wide breakbulk cargo tracking system and expects it to be operational in the near future.

Charleston is also enhancing its forest products handling capacity with expansion onto the former Charleston Naval Shipyard. Base realignment and closure has resulted in an opportunity for the Port to acquire additional storage capacity and berthing space. The first agreement signed late last year provides more than 100 acres of open storage, covered storage and three piers.

Port of Charleston

Forest Products Container Volume

FY99 vs. FY00 - Measured in TEUs

Commodity Group






Paper Products



Logs & Lumber



Note: FY00 figures are estimates.