Imports up, exports down, logs down a lot.
The Northwest Seaport Alliance comprising the Port of Tacoma and the Port of Seattle this week released the latest trade scorecard showing cargo volumes at the two facilities.
• International imports of TEUs, or 20-foot-equivalent shipping containers, reached 414,256 units in April, up 8.2 percent from April 2014.
• International exports of TEUS came in at 269,007 units, down 17.7 percent from the year before.
• Total international TEUS marked 850,186 units, up 2.1 percent from April 2014.
• Total container-cargo traffic at the two ports was up 5.9 percent in April.
• Among specialty cargoes, automobiles were down 0.8 percent from the year before; grain was up 3 percent; petroleum was down 2.7 percent; and logs were down 31.3 percent.
• The total volume of cargo reached 12.89 million metric tons in April, up 4.3 percent from April 2014.
• With a total of 1.1 million TEUs in April, the NSA said in a release, “The moderate volumes reflect the return of normal operations at the ports of Seattle and Tacoma, as the ports finished clearing the backlog of cargo built up during contract negotiations between the West Coast labor union and employers. The ports expect container volumes to continue to stabilize in the coming months as vessels return to normal service schedules and manufacturers in Asia clear excess inventory.”
As the Northwest Seaport Alliance, the two ports now are releasing cargo figures only as combined totals rather than by individual ports. The ports are in the process of joining their cargo operations into a single alliance, casting aside decades of rivalry between them. The alliance will manage the marketing and operations of the ports’ cargo facilities, but those facilities will remain under each port’s individual ownership.
The boards of both ports will host a town hall meeting Thursday evening to discuss and answer questions concerning the proposed alliance.
The meeting will begin at 7 p.m. in the Rotunda at Clover Park Technical College, 4500 Steilacoom Blvd. SW in Lakewood.