Activity remains strong at the Port of Oakland, with first-quarter cargo volume up 4 percent and the launch of a new shipping service to Vietnam on tap for later this month, port officials said today.
The port handled 612,151 twenty-foot equivalent units in the first three months of 2019, up 4.2 percent compared with the year-ago period. March cargo volume was up 10.7 percent compared to 2018, port officials said.
"Though the import rally has calmed down, we are still seeing a strong consumer demand in Northern California and Western Nevada," Port of Oakland Maritime Director John Driscoll said in a statement announcing the quarterly results. "The Bay Area's strong consumer-based economy has helped the Port of Oakland absorb the impact of the weakening rally better than other ports."
Port officials also announced a new shipping service to Vietnam, set to begin by the end of April. Pacific International Lines (PIL) will launch direct Vietnam links using vessels that carry up to 11,900 20-foot containers. The new service is called AC5 and is a partnership with Cosco and Wan Hai.
Exports to Vietnam through Oakland have grown 126 percent since 2015, port officials said.
"PIL's new direct service from the Port of Oakland is a good sign of increasing demand on Vietnam routes," Driscoll said. "Vietnam is showing strong growth in its import and export markets."