The Port of Los Angeles saw a 2.5% increase in the amount of cargo processed in December, marking the fifth consecutive month of year-over-year gains.
Total cargo volumes came in at 747,335 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs), which is up from the 728,871 TEUs handled in December 2022.
December 2023 loaded imports landed at 369,477 TEUs, an increase of 5% compared to the previous year. Loaded exports came in at 121,575 TEUs, an increase of 26% compared to 2022. Empty containers totaled 256,283 TEUs, an 8.5% decrease compared to last year.
Despite a slow start, the port ended the year handling 8,634,497 TEUs in 2023, retaining its position as the nation’s busiest container port for the 24th consecutive year. The cargo volume is about 13% less than in 2022 and 18% below the port’s annual record of nearly 10.7 million TEUs set in 2021.
Monthly cargo growth returned in the second half of 2023 thanks to a busier than anticipated holiday shipping season and easier year-on-year comparisons with the conclusion of the pandemic imports surge by the end of Summer 2022.
In the upcoming months and year, stakeholders will monitoring cargo volumes at the Port of Los Angeles for potential impacts from Red Sea disruptions and Panama Canal transit restrictions due to drought.
“In 2024, our sights are set on community investment, sustainability progress and capturing additional market share,” said Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Gene Seroka. “To drive cargo, we’re investing in a 10-year, $2 billion capital improvement program. We’ll also focus on secure technology enhancements to improve efficiency and reduce our carbon footprint. All that leads to additional jobs and the Port’s ability to re-invest more dollars back into our communities.”
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