PORT of Melbourne saw an increase in container volumes in December, according to the latest available trade statistics.

December 2021 saw a total of 275,459 TEU cross the wharves at the Victorian port. This was an increase of 4% on December 2020.

Import container numbers increased by 3.4% on December 2020. This was driven by increases in containerised imports of paperboards, clothing and raw plastics.

Export containers increased by 4.5% in December on the same month in 2020. This was driven by increased exports of milk (dried and processed), hay, chaff and fodder, scrap metal and wine.

Turning to trade with the Apple Isle, we find full container trade between Melbourne and Tasmania (excluding transhipments) came to 18,558 TEU in December 2021. This was a decrease of 3.5% on the same month in 2020.

However, early January’s container numbers are tracking below the same month last year. Port of Melbourne said continuing congestion is to blame for the slowdown in trade.

In its latest stakeholder update, Port of Melbourne said the Omicron outbreak continues to impact labour allocations throughout the port’s container terminals and throughout the wider supply chain.