Fort Lauderdale’s Marine Economy is Key to Economic Growth

Fort Lauderdale is known as the “Yachting Capital of the World” and is home to one of the largest and most important boating and marine industries in the United States. The presence of extensive waterways, including the Atlantic Ocean, Intracoastal Waterway, and numerous canals, makes Fort Lauderdale an ideal location for marine-related activities. The city’s favorable climate, beautiful coastline, and access to international markets contribute to its prominence in the global marine trade.

The extensive infrastructure to support pleasure boats and yachts of all sizes makes our home an ideal place for all manners of marine-oriented businesses. Fort Lauderdale is also home to the world’s third-largest cruise port. Port Everglades will likely soon be the largest cruise port with the addition of Disney Cruise lines, and after current renovations are completed.

According to data from the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), approximately 80% of global trade by volume and 70% by value is transported by sea.

Ocean transportation is a vital component of the global economy, enabling the movement of goods and resources across vast distances. Large cargo vessels, including container ships, bulk carriers, and oil tankers, are responsible for transporting goods such as manufactured products, raw materials, commodities, and energy resources between countries and continents.

The maritime industry plays a crucial role in facilitating international trade, connecting producers with consumers and facilitating the exchange of goods on a global scale. Major shipping routes, such as those connecting Asia, Europe, and North America, see substantial volumes of goods transported daily.

In 2020, the United States marine economy made up $361.4 billion of the GDP, with coastal and offshore tourism and recreation being the largest contributor. The global value of the blue economy is projected to reach $3 trillion by 2030.

In Greater Fort Lauderdale, the blue economy is integral to our economy and prosperity, as we heavily rely on coastal and ocean-related resources to support employment, businesses, and tourism. Our marine industry consists of world-class shipyards, marinas, manufacturing, and various marine services, creating over 142,000 regional jobs, with 111,000 in Broward County alone. 

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