Container volumes through The Northwest Seaport Alliance continued to post gains in July, growing nearly 8 percent compared to July 2014.
Through the first seven months of the year, the NWSA has handled nearly 2.1 million TEUs (20-foot equivalent units), a 4 percent increase year to date. Strong volumes of full import containers powered the 3 percent year-to-date gain in containerized imports to 823,695 TEUs. Export containers grew nearly 6 percent year to date to 733,150 TEUs, propelled by the high volume of empty containers being sent back to Asia.
Full export containers struggled in July, falling nearly 14 percent on the year, the result of a stronger U.S. dollar and softening economies in Japan and China. Drought and extreme heat in the Pacific Northwest have also challenged Washington state’s agricultural output. In other year-to-date cargo news: Auto imports jumped nearly 8 percent to 109,950 units Breakbulk volumes stabilized, down less than 1 percent to 162,090 metric tons Grain exports continued to fall, down almost 12 percent to 3,690,251 metric tons.
The ports of Seattle and Tacoma formally launched The Northwest Seaport Alliance Aug. 4. The alliance, the first of its kind in North America, will strengthen the Puget Sound gateway and attract more cargo for the region.