It is mostly agreed that the previous congestion of containers at the US West Coast ports, during late 2014 and early 2015, hurt the ocean freight shipping industry. There were massive delays at the West Coast ports that hurt many businesses and diminished the image of the maritime industry.
In the wake of the West Coast, it seems that there was a bit of good news to report. Many shippers, unhappy with the delays, decided to re-route their cargo to other US ports. Specially, the Southeast Ports were the largest recipient of this detoured cargo. It was announced that the Port of Savannah saw a 14% increase in their overall volume at the port. The Port of Savannah was already expected to receive about a 4% increase for their overall annual transportation efforts. The West Coast congestion supplied the Port of Savannah with an added 10% volume increase. Other ports in the Southeast, like the Port of Jacksonville and the Port of Wilmington, also witnessed some volume gains.
The Southeast ports were the most popular detour destination for cargo during the West Coast congestion. The Journal of Commerce reported that some Southeast Port executives announced their belief that some of the detoured cargo will continue to remain at their ports, even after the West Coast situation gets fixed. Polls even suggest that many shippers will avoid the West Coast. 20% of those shippers will now choose to import through Southeast ports. Speak to a trusted freight forwarder if you wish to ship out of these ports.