International Business

Miami International Airport leads the way with international cargo

Roses from Columbia arrive at dawn at Miami International Airport aboard a UPS cargo jet for the Mother's Day market in 2012. Some 91 percent of U.S. flower imports arrive at MIA.
Roses from Columbia arrive at dawn at Miami International Airport aboard a UPS cargo jet for the Mother's Day market in 2012. Some 91 percent of U.S. flower imports arrive at MIA. MIAMI HERALD STAFF

As South Florida celebrates World Trade Month, Miami International Airport has released new trade statistics that show the airport’s outsized role in Florida’s international commerce.

The value of international freight moving through MIA in 2014 was more than $61.5 billion — tops in the nation. That figure represented 96 percent of international trade value for the entire state. The airport handled more than 1 million tons of international freight last year.

The airport also leads the nation in several important import sectors, handling 71 percent of perishable imports that arrive by air, 91 percent of U.S. flower imports, and 55 percent of U.S. fish imports arriving by air.

“Too often, MIA is simply viewed as a leading passenger hub, but that completely overlooks our airport’s massive international cargo operation, which is unmatched in the United States,” said Miami-Dade Aviation Director Emilio T. González.

Among the local events scheduled to coincide with World Trade month are:

Thursday: 9 a.m. - noon, Trade Day Event, features Customs and Border Protection agents and other federal government representatives who regulate imports. They’re available to answer questions. 6601 NW 25th St., Miami (Main lobby and second floor of the Cargo Clearance Center).

May 12-14: 8 a.m.-5 p.m., Discover Global Markets: The Americas, Conference explores new market opportunities, Hilton Miami Downtown, 1601 Biscayne Blvd., Miami, 33132. Fee: $395.

May 15: 8 a.m.-5 p.m, South Florida Logistics and Trade Conference, 1601 Biscayne Blvd., Miami 33132. Fee: $150 per member, $195 for non-members.

May 21: 9 a.m. to 11 a.m., tour of Miami International Airport’s Cargo operations, Miami-Dade Aviation Department (Crystal Palace or Building 845), 5600 NW 36th St., Miami 33166. Fee: $25. Another tour will be held May 28 from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m.

For more information on these events and other local World Trade Month activities, visit www.worldtrademonth.com

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