Home Truck News Vancouver port cargo volumes grew 6% in 2023 - Truck News

Vancouver port cargo volumes grew 6% in 2023 – Truck News

Cargo volumes through the Port of Vancouver increased by 6% in 2023, as terminal operators moved a record 150.4 million metric tones of trade last year. 

It was a mixed year at the Port of Vancouver, with growth in some sectors and softening in others, shows the recently-released Vancouver Fraser Port Authority’s 2023 cargo statistics.

While bulk and containerized exports grew, container imports softened in line with trends seen across the West Coast.

Port of Vancouver
(File photo: iStock)

Last year, trade was affected by global and domestic challenges such as a cooling global economy, disruptions to the Panama Canal and Red Sea trade routes, and a strike that affected container, bulk, breakbulk and auto terminals at the Port of Vancouver. 

The recovery from July’s 13-day strike by B.C. longshore workers was both steady and challenging, the port says, adding that the fluidity was mostly restored in the fall.

Bulk exports increased by 13% last year, compared to 2022. Automotive was up 36% in 2023 as the sector returned to pre-pandemic volumes, with supply chain and production issues easing and consumer demand for vehicles remaining resilient.

Container volumes 

Container volumes were down 12% year over year, to 3.1 million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEU). Meanwhile, inbound containers were down 13%, reaching 1.6 million TEU.

Containerized exports continued to recover from pandemic-era disruptions and were up 7% in 2023, as Canadian businesses used the increased availability of empty containers to deliver goods to markets across the globe.  

Empty container volumes were down 24%.

“While there was a softening of container volumes moving through the Port of Vancouver in 2023, Canada’s container sector remains on a long-term growth trajectory and we saw encouraging signs of recovery in Q4 as year over year volumes started to grow,” said Peter Xotta, president and CEO of the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority, in a news release. 

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