The Port of Norfolk experienced its largest single-month drop in cargo amounts during May of 2020 as the coronavirus shut down and recovery efforts get underway. The return of cargo is expected to increase after the third quarter as many analysts predict the blanked sailings indicate a lower amount of demand for ocean freight. The recovery should bring about a return to normal in 2021 which would bode well for the Port of Norfolk as many ports were showing record cargo levels before Chinese Lunar New Year started and was followed by COVID-19.
May quantities were down 59,000 TEUs from the same month in 2019, which was a year full of record numbers for Norfolk. The following information is from Wavy.com
- Total TEUs – 201,837, down, 22.6%
- Loaded Export TEUs – 72,160, down 18.1%
- Loaded Import TEUs – 87,669 down, 26.7%
- Total Containers – 112,913, down, 22.7%
According to South Carolina Port Authority President and CEO Jim Newsome, “If you look through February of our fiscal year, which was eight months, we were 25,000 containers ahead of our plan, a record pace. We were headed easily to $100 million cash flow. And then China really never came back from Chinese New Year for six weeks and then the Western world shut down due to the pandemic. “
This is a regularly updated situation that we’ll be keeping an eye on through September to monitor where the ports are through the recovery process. If you need cargo solutions for ocean or air freight during this time, reach out your Nelson International representative for more information and a quote.