Specifically, during the first quarter of 2020, cargo volumes noted a decrease by 18.5% compared to 2019. For the records, this was the lowest monthly cargo moving ever recorded for the port since February 2009.
We’ve had two serious shocks to our supply chain system. First the trade war between the U.S. and China and now the COVID-19 pandemic. With U.S. retailers and cargo owners scaling back orders, volumes are soft even though factories in China are beginning to produce more. Amidst this public health crisis, there will be uncertain months ahead in the global supply chain.
...said Gene Seroka, Executive Director of the Port of Los Angeles.
Moreover, March imports dropped by 25.9% to 220.255 TEUs from 2019. As for the exports, decreased 23.8% to 121.146 TEUs. At the same time, empty containers declined 44.5% to 108.168 TEUs while in total, March volumes came to 449.568 TEUs.
In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, port authorities are closely monitoring the situation and are in contact with terminal operators, longshore unions, and other supply chain stakeholders in order to ensure that stakeholders are able to provide all the necessary supplies.
Concluding, Port of LA still remains operational during those difficult times of the outbreak and serves as the temporary homeport of the Naval hospital ship USNS Mercy.