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U.S. ports to see lower volume of inbound containers from China in February: report

Thursday, 24 January 2019 | 00:00

The United States’ major ports will see the volume of inbound containers from China decline this February due to the Chinese Lunar New Year, according to a report.

Although China’s ports will only close for three days, the factory closures and employee absences during the technically one-week-long holiday mean a longer slowdown in freight markets, said the report, which is published by FreightWaves, a U.S. website providing information about freight markets.

“China’s manufacturing industry and logistics businesses typically shut down a week earlier and later than the official holiday period so employees can make the long journey home to the nation’s vast interior,” the report explained. “All in, the Lunar New Year can last up to 40 days thanks to the extended travel times and family reunions.”

An uncertain trade outlook could also impact the freight business as well in February, the report noted, which is typically the slowest month for U.S. imports of Chinese goods.

The dollar value of Chinese goods entering the United States was at its monthly lowest point in February in five of the last eight years, the report quoted data from the U.S. Census Bureau as saying, adding that the value of Chinese goods entering the United States fell by an average of 15 percent during February since 2011.

The Port of Los Angeles, the busiest in the United States by container volume, saw its volume of containers fall by 10 percent from January to February in 2018 while a 31 percent drop was seen from February to March.

To deal with the decline in February, shipping lines have changed their schedules, the report said.
Source: Xinhua

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