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Maritime industry has $3.9 billion economic impact on Indiana

Maritime industry has $3.9 billion economic impact on Indiana

Indiana ranks among the top 15 states nationally for maritime industry jobs, a new study found.

The shipping industry employs 15,360 people across the state, generating $874 million more in worker income annually, a study by PricewaterhouseCoopers on behalf of the Transportation Institute found. Shipping to the Port of Indiana-Burns Harbor and the two ports on the Ohio River at the southern end of the state contributes an estimated $3.9 billion a year to Indiana's economy.

“I commend the initiative of the American Maritime Partnership and the Transportation Institute to quantify and demonstrate the essential contribution of the shipbuilding and maritime industry to the strength of our national economy and our national security.” U.S. Rep. Pete Visclosky, D-Gary, said.

“I appreciate the dedicated work of the shipping industry in Northwest Indiana to grow our economy, and also remain dedicated to improving the environment," Visclosky said. "We must continue to do all we can to support good-paying shipbuilding and maritime job opportunities in the Great Lakes state of Indiana and throughout our nation.”

Ships on the Great Lakes move iron ore, steel, coal, stone, crops, wind turbine blades, beer tanks and many other products, supporting a variety of companies, such as ArcelorMittal Burns Harbor, which makes steel plate that's used in shipbuilding, and Central Marine Logistics in Griffith, which manages cargo vessels. 

“Central Marine Logistics is proudly based in Griffith, Indiana – the heart of the Midwest steel industry,” Central Marine President Tom Wiater said. “Our office staff and many of our crew members are Hoosier. But a lot also call other Great Lakes states home as well. Many of our team members are proud second and third-generation CML mariners... Our vessels are constantly moving cargoes in and out of Midwest ports and driving Midwest jobs. Our business is growing and we are annually investing over seven figures in the future of our fleet."

Overall, the domestic maritime industry employs 650,000 people across the country, generating $41 billion in income and contributing $154.8 billion to the overall economy, the study found.


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Business Reporter

Joseph S. Pete is a Lisagor Award-winning business reporter who covers steel, industry, unions, the ports, retail, banking and more. The Indiana University grad has been with The Times since 2013 and blogs about craft beer, culture and the military.

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