Gov. John Carney issued a statement April 19 on the unanimous vote by the general assembly’s joint committee on capital improvement to move forward with the transaction to expand the Port of Wilmington.

“Thank you to members of the Bond Bill committee for endorsing the transaction to expand the Port of Wilmington and invest in good-paying, blue-collar jobs for Delawareans. The port has long been one of Delaware’s most important employment centers. This expansion agreement will result in significant new investment that will allow the port to create new jobs and compete over the long term. I urge members of the Delaware House of Representatives and Delaware Senate to take up and pass a concurrent resolution that will allow this transaction to move forward,” said Carney.

Last month, Carney announced the preliminary agreement with Gulftainer to lease the Port of Wilmington from the state, construct a new container shipping facility on the Delaware River and significantly expand jobs at the port during the next decade. Under terms of the preliminary agreement, Gulftainer’s subsidiary GT USA would make annual royalty payments to the state of Delaware reaching an estimated $13 million over the next decade. The company also would agree to invest more than $580 million in the port during the next nine years, including about $410 million for a new container facility at DuPont’s former Edgemoor site, which was acquired by the Diamond State Port Corp. in 2016.

The transaction must be approved by members of the general assembly.