Port of Portland sees tonnage gain

Port of Portland sees tonnage gain

The Port of Portland said the number of vessel calls, tonnage and containers increased through the first six months of the year, while breakbulk tonnage and auto imports dropped.

The port - the largest wheat export port in the U.S. - saw its total grain tonnage shoot up more than 20 percent, compared to the January-June period in 2002.

Auto imports in units declined six percent. Portland is the largest auto-handling port by volume on the West Coast and the third-largest in the United States.

The port saw 405 vessel calls as of June, up two percent from the year-ago period.

Total container volume, including loading and discharging, was about 170,000 TEUs, an increase of more than 40 percent from 2002 year-to-date figures.

Total tonnage increased 15 percent, up 10 percent in June alone, to 900,000 short tons from 815,000 short tons. Breakbulk cargo plunged by 15 percent.

The total value of the port's waterborne trade for last year was $11.2 billion. Japan is Portland's largest trading partner.

- Annu Mangat