Port Terminal Update and Cargo Facility Fees

Impact on ports: 20-30% drop in volumes for the first half

Port terminals across North America are assessing the impact of COVID-19 on first quarter results.  According to the American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA), US ports are projecting a 20 to 30 percent volume drop in the first half of this year.  The AAPA has sought Congressional grants for ports to maintain workforces and port employer associations have asked for federal grants to support spending on cleaning and personal protective equipment.

Ports reducing shifts and terminal sites

As early as March we were reporting on reduced port terminal hours on the West Coast, and two months later we continue to see reduced shifts and hours due to cleaning schedules and reduced port volumes.  At Port of Virginia, market conditions prompted the closure of PMT terminal operations and as of last week all ocean services were shifted to NIT and VIG terminals. 

Cargo Facility Fees  

Port terminals have often applied cargo facility fees to fund infrastructure investments and extended gate hours.  Some charges have always been passed on to the cargo owners, such as PierPass in Los Angeles, or were mitigated with pressure by ocean carriers.  However given the financial impact facing the industry, ocean carriers will be passing on charges to their customers:

  • New York / New Jersey – container facility fee of $11 per TEU starting May 11th, 2020
  • Oakland – OICT gate fee increases from $30 to $35 per container July 6th, 2020.
  • Los Angeles / Long Beach – PierPass is reviewed by the West Coast MTO Agreement for August. 

Hillebrand continues to minimize the disruption from port terminal schedule changes and to work loads and deliveries around the latest terminal hours wherever possible.  Customers should plan ahead for holiday closures for Memorial day on May 25th, 2020 which is a longshoremen union holiday.  You can find daily updates on North American port terminal schedule changes on Hillebrand’s website here.   

NASA and Hillebrand are here to help you navigate this ever changing environment and organize transport solutions for your business needs.  We thank you for your continued support; please reach out for any questions.