The Port of Long Beach’s TEU traffic dropped by 9.8% year-on-year in February 2020 as a result of the coronavirus outbreak and continued tariffs between the US and China, according to a statement.
The second busiest port in the US said imports dropped by 17.9%, while exports increased 19.3%. Empty containers send overseas decreased by 12.8%.
Approximately $370 billion in Chinese goods remains under tariffs, despite the US and China signing a Phase one preliminary trade agreement in 2019, which sought to bring an end to an almost three-year trade war.
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As well as that, coronavirus has caused congestion, delay and uncertainty at many of the world’s biggest ports.
In February 2020, Port Technology International (PTI) reported how the ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles had suffered drops in TEU volume in January.
“The coronavirus has caused further disruption to the supply chain with an increase in canceled sailings and a reduction in cargo,” the Port said.
Mario Cordero, Executive Director, Port of Long Beach, said that there may be a “surge of cargo” once the virus is contained, and that its terminals, workforce and supply chain will be “ready to handle it”.