Port of Virginia shatters cargo record

Published 12:11 am Saturday, August 31, 2013

The Port of Virginia set a new record for cargo handled in a single month in July, according to the Virginia Port Authority.

The more than 200,000 TEUs (20-foot equivalent containers) handled in July shattered the mark set nearly six years ago, the authority stated in a news release.

“This is the first time in our history that we have eclipsed 200,000 TEUs in a single month,” stated Rodney W. Oliver, the authority’s interim executive director.


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“The record-high container volume also marks the best fiscal-year start in the port’s history.”

Last month, the port moved 205,137 TEUs, up 13.7 percent on the same month last year. The calendar year volume is 1.25 million TEUs, up 7.2 percent over the same period last year.

The former single-month record of 199,448 TEUs was set in October 2007.

“In July, we saw a nice balance of import and export cargo — a bit heavier on exports — meaning customers are taking advantage of those first-in and last-out port calls here,” Oliver stated in the release.

Import TEUs were at 98,774 and exports at 106,363 in July, increases of 14.9 percent and 12.7 percent, respectively.

For the calendar year, imports are up 8.9 percent and exports are 5.7 percent.

“Additionally, our rail volume continues to be strong: In July we handled 37,985 rail containers, and that figure represents the second-best month for rail in the history of the port, after the all-time record set earlier in May,” Oliver stated.

Virginia’s breakbulk business also rose in July. The port handled 37,584 short tons of breakbulk cargo last month, making it the best month for breakbulk business since last November.

The Port of Virginia contributes $43 billion and 350,000 resident jobs to the Commonwealth annually, according to the authority.