Sea-Land Service Inc. has added Baltimore as a port of call on the service to South America that it provides jointly with Transroll, a Brazilian steamship line.
When the two lines began the service to Brazil in November, the vessels called on two U.S. ports, Elizabeth, N.J., and Jacksonville, Fla.
Baltimore was officially added to the service this week with the arrival Monday night of the Gallant at Seagirt Marine Terminal. The ship unloaded 41 containers and four rail cars.
Two weeks earlier, another ship on the joint service called at Baltimore as part of a trial run. That visit apparently went well enough for the lines to add Baltimore as a regular port of call.
The new service indicates the continued success Baltimore has had in the past year in attracting new service, mostly from small to medium-sized lines.
"We're seeing some positive signs from those intermediate carriers," said Adrian G. Teel, executive director of the Maryland Port Administration.
Many of the new lines at the port are operating in the South American trade. "We've seen real good growth there," Mr. Teel said.
Baltimore will be the first stop for the Sea-Land/Transroll ships on the northward leg of their voyages.
"We are offering one of the best transit times available from Brazil," said Glen Carlson, Sea-Land's general manager in Brazil.
The schedule will include five Brazilian ports, Santos, Imbituba, Rio Grande, Itajai and Rio de Janeiro.
The two lines are using three ships on the route. A ship will call at Baltimore once every two weeks.