port of long beach

Cargo Volumes at Port of Long Beach Showing Signs of Recovery

Mike Schuler
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June 9, 2020

Photo courtesy Port of Long Beach

Cargo volumes at the Port of Long Beach rose last month as the economic fallout from COVID-19 pandemic finally shows signs of recovery.

Dockworkers and terminal operators at the port moved a total of 628,205 TEUs of container cargo last month, a 9.5% increase from May 2019, the port reported Tuesday. Imports also grew 7.6% to 312,590 TEUs while exports climbed 11.6% to 134,556 TEUs. Empty containers headed back overseas jumped 11.4% to 181,060 TEUs.

The May figures mark the first month in 2020 that cargo shipments rose at the Port of Long Beach, and followed seven consecutive months of declines attributed to the U.S.-China trade dispute and the COVID-19 epidemic.

Year-to-date, the Port of Long Beach has moved 2,830,855 TEUs, down 5.9% compared to the same period in 2019.

The Port of Long Beach is the nation’s second busiest port behind neighboring Port of Los Angeles. The port attributed the uptick in volumes to manufacturing resuming in China to rebound from the effects of COVID-19, while demand for furniture, digital products and home improvement goods is increasing in the United States.

“We aren’t out of the woods, but this is the gradual growth we have anticipated as the United States starts to rebound from the devastating economic impacts of COVID-19 and the trade war with China,” said Long Beach Harbor Commission President Bonnie Lowenthal.

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