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Port of Long Beach trade slows in May

Cargo declines amid canceled voyages, shifting trade routes

Shifting trade routes and canceled voyages led to a decline in cargo at the Port of Long Beach in May.

Dockworkers and terminal operators moved 695,937 twenty-foot equivalent units last month, down 8.2% from May 2023. Imports slid 4.5% to 345,271 TEUs and exports decreased 21.1% to 100,885 TEUs. Empty containers moving through the Port declined 7% to 249,782 TEUs.

The Port has moved 3,449,181 TEUs through the first five months of 2024 and is still up 10% from the same period in 2023.

Mario Cordero 2022 headshot

Mario Cordero

“I am confident we will see additional cargo as we work with industry partners to rebuild our market share in this increasingly competitive environment,” said Port of Long Beach CEO Mario Cordero. “Looking ahead, I anticipate a moderate increase in cargo as we move into summer and we recapture business by delivering the top-notch customer service that makes us the Port of Choice.”

“Our longshore labor, facilities, and industry partners are ready for cargo growth as we head into the shipping season for back-to-school and beyond, thanks to our ability to move goods reliably, quickly, and sustainably.” said Long Beach Harbor Commission President Bobby Olvera Jr. “Over the long term, the San Pedro Bay ports complex will continue to be a strategic and sustainable gateway for trans-Pacific trade.”

For complete cargo numbers, visit polb.com/statistics.