Business, Freight News, Sea

Port of Oakland import volume up for third straight month

[ September 22, 2020   //   ]

Import cargo volume increased for the third consecutive month at the Port of Oakland in August. The Port said today that containerized import volume jumped 9 percent in August compared to 2019 totals. Exports were also up, 1.4 percent compared to August 2019.

The Port said it’s encouraged by the rebound as it enters peak shipping season which runs from August to October. Peak season is when retailers get ready for the traditionally busy shopping months of November and December.

“We remain cautious because as we have already seen, the coronavirus pandemic has created lots of uncertainty,” said Port of Oakland Maritime Director Bryan Brandes. “We’re waiting to see how COVID-19 will affect our retail partners.”

The Port attributed the boost in imports to U.S. retailers restocking their dwindling inventories. Shipments include pandemic-related items such as e-commerce goods, medical equipment and personal protective equipment. The Port said the gain in August exports was due to fruit and beverage shipments doing slightly better compared to August 2019.

The Port said its year-to-date total cargo volume is down 5 percent from 2019. That’s due primarily to a 25.3 percent drop in shipments of empty cargo containers back to origin destinations.