The Port of Oakland handled 82,440 20-foot equivalent unit (TEU) import containers in May, its highest level in nearly two years, the port said today.
The port's import volume was up 1.4 percent from May 2016 levels, it said. The last time import volumes were this high was in August 2015, when the port moved the equivalent of 82,492 20-foot import boxes.
The Port said that overall volumes, which include imports, exports, and empty containers, grew 2.2 percent during the first five months in 2017 compared to the same period last year. Meanwhile, the number of vessels that called Oakland fell 7 percent. The lower number of ship calls has been offset by the larger sizes of the vessels that do arrive, the port said. For example, megaships capable of transporting up to 14,000 20-foot containers call at Oakland each week.
Imports account for 48 percent of containers shipped through Oakland. It is one of the few U.S. ports that handle more export traffic than import.
"Our import volume has been up four consecutive months," Maritime Director John Driscoll said in a statement. "That's encouraging as we head into the traditionally busy summer-fall peak season."