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Port Metro Vancouver reports increase in container traffic

(Courtesy Port Metro Vancouver)

Vancouver-area docks saw eight per cent increase in container traffic in first half of 2015

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – Port Metro Vancouver says its total cargo in the first half of 2015 was slightly higher than a year earlier.

Vancouver-area docks saw an eight per cent increase in container traffic, which the port authority says “is likely due to the impact of cargo diverted to Vancouver earlier this year” from US ports that were hit by strikes. Also, year-earlier results were lowered by a truckers’ strike in Vancouver.

The 70.3 million metric tonnes of cargo was up 1.5 per cent, led by wheat, sulphur, potash, lumber and consumer goods. Outbound shipments of wheat soared 32 per cent.

Potash and potassium-based fertilizer exports were up 19 per cent while sulphur shipments rose 17 per cent. Auto volumes bounced back with a seven per cent gain while lumber increased by more than six per cent.

Falling commodity prices hurt some shipments. Port Metro says its tonnage of minerals sank 19 per cent while ore and concentrates dropped 12 per cent. Coal was down a relatively small two per cent.