Global Slowdown Continues to Affect NWSA Cargo Volumes

The Northwest Seaport Alliance handled 240,671 TEUs in May 2020, a 23.8-percent decrease compared to May 2019. Full imports declined 22.9 percent while full exports decreased 15.5 percent.

Through the first five months of 2020, overall container volumes declined 18.8 percent compared to 2019. The NWSA handled a total of 1,277,227 TEUs year to date, marking the softest five months since 2009 when the gateway moved 1,210,284 TEUs. The economic fallout from the global pandemic continues to disrupt supply chains across the country and around the world. The NWSA gateway experienced a total of 46 blank sailings through May, driven by COVID-19-inspired slowdowns and the lingering trade dispute with China.

The Northwest Seaport Alliance’s total year-to-date domestic container volumes dipped 6.3 percent. Alaska and Hawaii volumes declined 6.6 percent and 4.7 percent, respectively.

Breakbulk cargo volumes were down 1 percent year over year to 118,000 metric tons.

Auto volumes year to date were 60,018 units, down 20.6 percent year over year.

By Sarah Spangler