Cargo tonnage at the Port of Hueneme, California, increased 8.2 percent to 1.3 million metric tons in the fiscal year ending June 30.
Located in Ventura County north of Los Angeles, the port specializes in niche cargoes, including automobiles, high and heavy shipments such as agricultural and construction machinery, fresh produce, fertilizer, fish and petroleum products.
Automobile imports increased 21 percent in fiscal year 2012 over the previous year, led by imports of Hyundai and Kia cars. BMW reported an 11 percent increase in the overall processing volume of imports through the Oxnard Vehicle Distribution Center.
Auto exports are also important at the Port of Hueneme, and a significant portion of the increase in auto exports was driven by foreign manufacturers such as Honda and Toyota operating from new facilities in the U.S. and shipping their autos to Asia.
The Port of Hueneme also recorded a 29.6 percent increase in imports of high and heavy cargo and a 44.6 percent increase in equipment exports. Companies in this business include John Deere, New Holland, Case International, Hyster, Caterpillar and Volvo.
Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics handles much of the high and heavy equipment cargo. WWL also transports and processes automobiles. Its volumes last year increased by double digits.
The port’s fruit business increased 2.1 percent. Liquid fertilizer imports grew 28.9 percent. Also, shallow-drat cargo including fish, lube oil and vessel fuel increased 20.5 percent, and offshore domestic oil increased 12.5 percent.