Overall cargo volumes last month fell 11% year over year at the Port of Oakland, according to new data released April 20.
In March, imports dipped 3% and exports tumbled 25% compared to the same time last year, according to the port.
Fewer ship arrivals resulted in diminished business last month when only 82 vessels came to the Northern California seaport, down from 93 in March 2021, data show.
Bottlenecks at West Coast seaports and a COVID-19 related port closure in Shanghai also played a factor in reduced cargo numbers, port officials said.
Fewer ship visits also resulted in reduced export business for Oakland, which is working with exporters – especially agricultural exporters – to locate more space on vessels and more containers to move goods overseas. One effort involves a new pop-up storage yard that opened March 7.
Still, the port is optimistic about cargo numbers in the coming months with congestion easing at Oakland and imports and exports rising in the past 30 days.
“We’re pleased with our March figures,” port Maritime Director Bryan Brandes said. “Despite continued COVID-related lockdowns in China, we expect our container volumes to rise as we approach the summer months.”