The Maryland Department of Transportation Maryland Port Administration (MDOT MPA) is welcoming a new Asian container service through Southeast Asia/Vietnam and China with the launch of a new Maersk Line to the Helen Delich Bentley Port of Baltimore.

This Transpacific/Panama Canal service will begin in July, with the first ships arriving in Baltimore in late August. The service will include a string of up to 13 ships with carrying capacities of 4,500-plus Twenty-foot Equivalent (TEU) containers.

The new service will arrive at the Port’s Seagirt Marine Terminal, which is managed by Ports America Chesapeake under the public-private partnership with MDOT MPA. Vessels in Maersk’s new TP20 Loop service will originate in the Port of Vung Tao, Vietnam, head north to the ports of Ningbo-Zhoushan, China and Shanghai, China and then sail through the Panama Canal discharging goods in Norfolk and Baltimore – the only two U.S. ports in this service string.

The service reflects a need for more cargo gateways in the United States, as port congestion is at an all-time high. Baltimore is a prime gateway for containers with goods heading to the ecommerce market and for cargo sent to the Midwest via rail.