Los Angeles’ container traffic soared 18% in 2003
The port of Los Angeles reported an 18-percent jump in its container traffic for 2003, to 7.2 million TEUs, increasing its lead over the neighboring port of Long Beach.
The 2003 volume in Los Angeles, up 1.1 million TEUs from the 6.1-million throughput it handled in 2002, marks a new record for the port.
By contrast, the port of Long Beach recently announced a modest 2.9-percent growth in box traffic last year, to 4.7 million TEUs.
Inbound loaded containers at Los Angeles amounted to 3.8 million TEUs in 2003, as compared to 3.2 million TEUs in 2002. The number of outbound loaded boxes grew to 1.2 million TEUs last year, from 1.1 million TEUs in 2002.
The port reported a spectacular increase in outbound empty containers, to 2.1 million TEUs in 2003, from 1.6 million TEUs the previous year. The higher number of empty boxes accounted for about half of the port’s total growth in container traffic last year, and provides further evidence of the increasing problem created by the east/west cargo imbalance.
Los Angeles ended the year with weak volumes for December. Total December box volume dipped 0.7 percent, to 562,658 TEUs. Loaded inbound traffic rose 3.7 percent, to 301,922 TEUs, while loaded outbound containers fell 11.4 percent, to 99,185 TEUs. The number of empty boxes decreased 1.3 percent in December, to 161,550 TEUs.