Port of Tacoma

Seaport alliance marks highest container volumes since 2007

A Port of Tacoma crane is shown next to cargo containers on a ship docked at the Port of Tacoma in 2015. The Northwest Seaport Alliance finished strong in 2016 for shipping through the ports of Tacoma and Seattle.
A Port of Tacoma crane is shown next to cargo containers on a ship docked at the Port of Tacoma in 2015. The Northwest Seaport Alliance finished strong in 2016 for shipping through the ports of Tacoma and Seattle. Associated Press file, 2015

The Northwest Seaport Alliance finished strong in 2016 for shipping through the ports of Tacoma and Seattle.

Last year’s container traffic through both ports was the highest since 2007, according to a news release from the Northwest Seaport Alliance.

The seaport alliance formed a little more than a year ago as a partnership between the Port of Tacoma and the Port of Seattle. The alliance manages cargo business for both ports. The data compare traffic through both ports, both before and after they formed the alliance.

In 2016, the alliance managed more than 3.6 million TEUs, or 20-foot-equivalent container units, an increase of more than 2 percent from 2015 container volumes.

Full containers of imported goods were also up 6 percent to almost 1.4 million TEUs, and full exports increased 13 percent to 984,274 TEUs, the news release said.

Breakbulk shipments, cargo that is not shipped in a container, were down 23 percent for the year because of a global downturn in shipping of agricultural, mining and construction equipment. The strong U.S. dollar also affected volumes, according to the seaport alliance.

Log exports dropped by a quarter to 176,928 metric tons because of competition from New Zealand.

Auto units fell 10 percent to 165,687 units because of production and supply chain issues, the alliance said.

Kate Martin: 253-597-8542, @KateReports

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