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Long Beach reaches busiest month on record - up 63.2pc to 840,387 TEU

THE Port of Long Beach achieved its busiest month and its second-best quarter on record as consumers turned their computers into virtual shopping malls, reports the American Journal of Transportation

12 April 2021 - 19:00
THE Port of Long Beach achieved its busiest month and its second-best quarter on record as consumers turned their computers into virtual shopping malls, reports the American Journal of Transportation.

Although March is traditionally one of the slowest months on the shipping calendar, dockworkers and terminal operators moved 840,387 TEU last month, a 62.3 per cent jump from March 2020 and marking the largest year-on-year increase for a single month at the port.



The previous 'best month' record of 815,885 TEU, set in December 2020, was surpassed by 24,502 TEU. It was also the third time in the Port of Long Beach's 110-year history that it has handled more than 800,000 TEU in a single month.



Imports rose 74 per cent to 408,172 TEU, while exports declined 3.9 per cent to 139,710 TEU compared to March 2020, when the economic effects of Covid led to cancelled sailings and fewer cargo shipments processed through Long Beach. Empty containers moved through the port were up 112.5 per cent to 292,505 TEU.



'Consumers are spending less on travel this year and turning toward online retail in unprecedented numbers to purchase exercise equipment, office furniture and home improvement items,' said the port's executive director Mario Cordero.



'The demand for e-commerce is happening more quickly than we anticipated, but we will continue to collaborate with our industry stakeholders to catch up with the unprecedented cargo volume at our gateway,' he said.



March's numbers mark the ninth consecutive month that the Port of Long Beach has broken cargo movement records for a particular month amid a historic cargo surge that started in July 2020.



The port has moved 2,376,128 TEUs during the first quarter of 2021, a 41.2 per cent increase from the same period in 2020. It was also the port's best first quarter on record, breaking the previous record set during the first three months of 2018 by 481,251 TEU, and its second-best quarter overall, behind the fourth quarter of 2020.




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