Port of Oakland facing a new normal due to COVID-19
The coronavirus pandemic could permanently alter the transport practices of containers, Calfornia's Port of Oakland announced.
Supply chains could be modified too. For example, the proliferation of online transactions caused by shelter-in-place orders could speed up the reconfiguration or consolidation of distribution centres. Distribution centers may be moved from fewer channels to more central areas to support population centres.
In a message sent to the Harbor Trucking Association last week, Oakland maritime officials said less containerships would likely mean less cargo at the port this spring.
The port told freight hauliers that it had canceled 20 May and June trips to Oakland. The result could be a 5-to-15 per cent decrease in volume of containerized cargo going into summer.
The port blamed vessel cancelations on the pandemic coronavirus that has stunted global trade. There is less product to load into ships, with consumer spending down. That means fewer vessels between Asian manufacturing centers and US ports are required. According to the port, import volume is expected to experience the greatest decrease in cargo in coming months.
More than 99 per cent of containerized goods passing through Northern California are loaded and discharged by the Port of Oakland
In March 2020, maximum imports of the port stood at 67,035 TEUs, a decline as compared to 74,714 TEUs handled last year in the same month, the monthly container statistics of the Port of Oakland reveal.
Maritime Business World