Texas ports are critical to the economic growth of the state and are key components of Texas’ transportation system. As hubs of international trade, Texas ports support nearly $450 billion in economic activity in the state and $1 trillion in the nation.
According to a 2018 report by the Texas Ports Association, the port industry supports more than 128,000 direct jobs in Texas, generating $8.7 billion in personal income. An additional 1.7 million jobs and $102 billion in personal income is generated from economic activity dependent on the state’s ports and the industry contributes $7.8 billion annually in state and local tax revenues.
The Maritime Division promotes the maritime industry in Texas and helps to develop the state’s maritime transportation system, including intermodal connectivity of each port to the interstate highway system and freight network.
Together, Texas ports move more cargo than any other state—more than 607 million tons in 2020, including 464 million tons of international cargo and 143 million tons of domestic cargo. Texas ports also moved nearly three million containers (TEUs) and served nearly 500,000 cruise passengers, despite the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. Five of the state’s ports are ranked in the top 20 U.S. ports by total tonnage, including:
- Port Houston (1st)
- Port of Corpus Christi (3rd)
- Port of Beaumont (8th)
- Port of Port Arthur (15th)
- Port of Texas City (20th)
Our Texas Port Profiles highlight more statistics related to each ports’ primary commodities, vessel and truck traffic, and port facilities. You can find out more information about each port by visiting their websites below:
Despite the strong position of the maritime industry in Texas, there is a significant need for additional funding for port capital and ship channel improvement projects. The biennial Texas Ports Mission Plan developed by the Port Authority Advisory Committee highlights these needs.