Maryland Port Administration Executive Director Adrian G. Teel will embark on his first foreign trade mission on behalf of the port of Baltimore Saturday, when he departs on a weeklong trip to South America.
Mr. Teel, who assumed the leadership of the MPA four months ago, will visit shippers and steamship line officials in Brazil and Chile before returning to Baltimore on Nov. 2. Four days later he will leave on a 10-day journey to the Far East.
South America, he said, is an "emerging market" with a "huge amount of potential" for the port of Baltimore. Since almost all the principal steamship lines serving South America call here, the port is very well positioned to take advantage of the growth opportunities, he said.
Chile is a producer of fresh fruit consumed in the United States during the winter. Philadelphia, which has the on-dock cold storage facilities needed to handle perishables, is the principal port on the East Coast for the Chilean fresh fruit.
Maryland port officials tried several years ago without success to capture some of that business for Baltimore. Those efforts included plans for building cold storage facilities on the docks in Baltimore. However, finding the money funds to build such a facility might be more difficult today because of the state's financial difficulties.
Mr. Teel will be accompanied on the South American trip by Maryland Transportation Secretary O. James Lighthizer, Manuel C. Ramos, the MPA's marketing representative in South America, and Bruce Cashon, the MPA's marketing head.
The Far East trip will include stays in China, South Korea and Taiwan.