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Long Beach reports box decline in September

Port of Long Beach (POLB) saw its container volumes decrease slightly by 0.9% in September to 741,823 TEUs.

The Californian port said diminishing consumer demand, full warehouses and inflation concerns led to the decline.

According to the port’s data, imports decreased by 7.4% to 342,671 TEUs, exports increased by 1.9% to 112,940 TEUs, while empty containers moved through the port rose 7% to 286,212 TEUs.

Meanwhile, the major US container port has moved more than 7.3 million TEUs during the first nine months of the year, representing a growth of 3.5% from the same period in 2021.

“Consumers and retailers are concerned about inflation, leading to warehouses filled with inventory and fewer product orders from Asia,” said POLB executive director, Mario Cordero, adding, “The respite is leading to increased capacity on the docks and fewer ships waiting off the coast to enter the Port.”

Source: Container News


Deepening project at Long Beach gets approval

The Long Beach Harbor Commission has approved a critical channel deepening project that is expected to ease cargo movement to and from the United States. The Port of Long Beach (POLB) and the federal government will share the costs, estimated at almost US$170 million, with the POLB’s portion being estimated at US$109 million.

“By improving navigation in Long Beach Harbor, goods will speed faster around the supply chain, yielding enormous economic benefits for our city, region, and the nation,” said Harbor Commission president, Sharon L. Weissman, adding that “At the same time, it will make operations safer and help lessen environmental impacts on our community.”

Among other features, the project includes deepening the Long Beach Approach Channel from 76 feet to 80 feet deep, easing turning bends in the Main Channel to deepen a wider area to 76 feet, deepening parts of the West Basin from 50 to 55 feet, constructing an approach channel and turning basin to Pier J South with a depth of 55 feet, improving the breakwaters at the entrance to Pier J, and depositing dredged material in nearshore sites for refuse or in federally approved ocean disposal sites.

“Deepening and improving our waterways will give these vessels more room to maneuver, and to do so more efficiently by taking on more containers, reducing the number of ship calls and associated emissions,” commented Port of Long Beach executive director, Mario Cordero.

Last October, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers concluded a multi-year federal study that showed deepening and widening channels in the harbor would lead to improved vessel navigation, safety, and national economic benefits of almost US$21 million annually.

Source: Container News


Long Beach breaks container volume record for February

California’s major port in Long Beach has reported its busiest February in its history, moving 796,560 TEU, which translates to a 3.2% increase compared to the same month last year.

February’s imports at the Port of Long Beach (POLB) grew by 4.4% reaching 390,335 TEU, while the port’s exports declined 1.2% to 117,935 TEU. At the same time, empty boxes moved through the port were up 3.5% to 288,290 TEU.

“We are moving record amounts of cargo and catching up with the ongoing surge of imports,” said POLB executive director Mario Cordero, who added, “Meanwhile, we are proceeding with measures we will need in the long term, such as development of our Supply Chain Information Highway data solution, which provides greater cargo visibility, connectivity and predictability.”

Long Beach harbor commission president, Steven Neal commented, “New records continue to be set by our hardworking workforce. We are collaborating with our industry partners to keep the supply chain moving as efficiently as possible.”

This record performance was achieved despite the fact that trade typically slows in February as east Asian factories close for up to two weeks to celebrate the Lunar New Year, pointed out the US port in its statement.

“Economic activity is anticipated to rebound after inflation cut into consumer spending during the first quarter of 2022, but it remains unclear how the war in Ukraine will affect the economy and financial markets,” noted the Port of Long Beach, which added that consumers are purchasing fewer goods and spending more on dining out, entertainment and other services due to the decline in Covid-19 cases.

Source: Container News


MSC to push up European rates

Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) has announced the introduction of new Freight All Kinds (FAK) rate increases that will be implemented from and to European ports and will be effective from 1 April but not beyond 30 April.

Firstly, the Geneva-headquartered ocean carrier will set FAK rate increases in sailings from the ports of Melbourne and Auckland in Oceania to the ports of Antwerp and Valencia, in Belgium and Spain, respectively.

The new prices after the increase, which will be introduced in all 20′, 40′ dry van (DV) and high cube (HC) containers, will be as follows:

Port of loading Port of discharge Commodity Rate 20 DV Rate 40 DV Rate 40 HC BRC 20 DV BRC 40 DV BRC 40 HC
Melbourne Antwerp Freight All Kinds (FAK) 8,500


11,000 439 878 878
Melbourne Valencia Freight All Kinds (FAK) 8,500


11,000 439 878 878
Auckland Antwerp Freight All Kinds (FAK) 9,000



439 878 878
Auckland Valencia Freight All Kinds (FAK) 9,000



439 878 878

Furthermore, MSC will apply FAK rate increases in shipments from European ports to the United States, and particularly, from Genova, La Spezia, Antwerp and Bremerhaven to New York and Long Beach.

The newly formed prices that will be set in the aforementioned types of cargo will be the following:

Port of loading Port of discharge Commodity New Base Rates Former Base Rates BRC
20 DV 40 DV-HC 20 DV 40 DV-HC 20 DV 40 DV-HC
Genova New York Freight All Kinds (FAK) 9,500 13,500 8,500 11,500 448 896
La Spezia Long Beach Freight All Kinds (FAK) 13,000 18,500 11,000 14,500 621 1’242
Antwerp New York Freight All Kinds (FAK) 8,000


 7,000 8,000 448 896


Long Beach

Freight All Kinds (FAK) 10,500 13,500 8,500 9,500 621 1’242

Source: Container News


Long Beach lifts container stacking limits due to California congestion crisis

The City of Long Beach has temporarily withdrawn limitations on the number and/or height of shipping container storage allowed at the Port of Long Beach (POLB) to ease the container storage crisis.

“It has recently come to the City’s attention the Municipal Code contains zoning provisions that limit the number and/or height of shipping container storage, that if relaxed for a short time could provide some assistance during this national crisis,” said the City of Long Beach in a statement.

Depending on the property zoning, these limits have been either two stacked containers or eight feet in height. These provisions, which have been in effect for many years, were established to address the visual impact to surrounding areas of sites with excessive storage.

Given this current national emergency and the Governor’s Executive Order to take necessary steps to alleviate the impacts on the system, the City Manager, Tom Modica, will temporarily waive enforcement of current shipping container stacking and height limits for a period of 90 days from 22 October.

During this period, affected operations will be allowed to stack up to four shipping containers without being cited for a Code violation.

“This will only apply to properties that are currently zoned to allow shipping container stacking,” noted the City. “Properties that wish to stack up to five containers high should contact Fire Prevention to ensure the site can safely accommodate the height prior to stacking above four containers high.”

The City added it will work during the next 90-day period to assess the situation and the effectiveness of this solution and any impacts on the surrounding areas.

Source: Container News