Friday, February 15, 2019

Record Box Numbers in San Pedro

By Karen Robes Meeks

The nation’s two busiest seaports, the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, posted record or near record cargo numbers last month, the ports announced Wednesday.

Los Angeles had its busiest January ever, moving 852,449 TEUs, a 5.4 percent increase from the same period last year. It also represents the seventh straight month in which the port moves more than 800,000 TEUs.

"These robust volumes reflect the pre-Lunar New Year surge of cargo, continued tariff-related inventory advances and strong consumer demand,” said Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Gene Seroka. “With warehouses and distribution centers already full with spring goods and supplies, we will see softer volumes immediately after the Lunar New Year as anticipated.” The port handled 429,923 TEUs in imports, a 1.7 percent increase from January 2018, while it moved 144,993 TEUs in exports, a 3.4 percent drop for the same period.

Meanwhile, Long Beach tallied 657,286 TEUs, 0.1 percent lower than January 2018, which stands as the port’s busiest January. “It’s encouraging to see these healthy volumes to start the year,” said Port of Long Beach Executive Director Mario Cordero. “As long as the economy is performing well, we expect our container trade to mirror it. Regardless, the Port will continue to focus on delivering operational excellence, working with ocean carriers, terminals, truckers, labor, cargo owners and all of our many stakeholders.”

Long Beach also registered 323,838 TEUs in imports a 0.3 percent decrease compare to January 2018 and 117,288 TEUs in exports, a 2.7 percent drop.

“While it will be a challenge to top last year, when we moved the most cargo in our 108-year history, we do anticipate modest growth in 2019,” said Long Beach Harbor Commission President Tracy Egoscue. “The Commission would like to wish our supply chain partners in Asia a happy Lunar New Year, and prosperous months ahead.”