TAMPA, Fla.—The Tampa Port Authority (TPA) and strategic partners AMPORTS, CSX and PortsAmerica co-hosted the Inaugural Tampa Automotive Short Sea Summit on Tuesday, bringing togetherdecision makers from many of the world’s largest auto manufacturers and high level representatives fromthe automobile logistics and supply chain sectors for a day-long summit to exchange ideas to bolster thePort of Tampa as the next gateway for automobile imports and exports to and from Mexico and LatinAmerica.After forming a partnership with the port authority earlier this year, AMPORTS, North America’slargest auto processor, partnered to create an auto processing and distribution facility at the port tohandle the processing of new automobiles, which essentially readies new car imports and exportsdirectly for the consumer market. AMPORTS recently completed construction and renovations to thedockside auto processing facility, at the port’s berth 202, which allows for roll-on/roll-off (RoRo) activity.2The group was welcomed by Hillsborough County Commissioner Sandy Murman and TampaMayor Bob Buckhorn, who offered their perspectives on the many benefits of doing business at the Portof Tampa. They invited the prestigious group, which included representatives from CSX, ocean carriers,truckers and other supply chain partners, to take a closer look at Tampa Bay for its many opportunitiesand business-friendly climate. Port President and CEO Paul Anderson and Executive Vice President andChief Commercial Officer Raul Alfonso, who have led the charge to get Tampa Bay on the mind of theautomotive industry, were very encouraged by the discussions and believe the open two-way dialog hasset the tone to create the right environment and momentum for the Port of Tampa to become anemerging option for the automotive industry for imports and exports.“This summit today is a huge step in our determination to make Tampa a bona fide hub for newautomobiles into the region. We have the facilities, the land and the logistics to make this work,” PaulAnderson, port president and CEO, said. “It is our goal to continue to build on our diversification andbring in this exciting new business that will offer real logistics solutions to the manufacturers and carriersas we look ahead and make this happen.”“We are excited to showcase our newest auto processing facility at the Port of Tampa, which willgive the automotive industry a new and exciting turn-key solution to their supply chain needs.AMPORTS’ partnership with the Port of Tampa, CSX and Ports America gives the automotive logisticsand supply chain industry a viable, affordable and efficient plant-to-dealer solution for their import andexport needs,” said Steve Rand, president and CEO of AMPORTS.The Port of Tampa is the largest economic engine in west central Florida, supporting nearly80,000 jobs and generating almost $15 billion in annual economic impact. In addition to being a top 10U.S. cruise port, the port handles a wide array of bulk, break bulk, containers and roll-on/roll-off cargoes,and is a major shipbuilding and repair center. The Port of Tampa was recently voted “Simply the Best”for world-class customer service in a Logistics Management Magazine reader poll. For more information,visit www.tampaport.com.