On January 14, SM Line made its inaugural vessel call at the Port of Portland’s Terminal 6, bringing weekly container shipping service back to Portland.
The 4,360 TEU vessel, the Qingdao, left the Port of Ningbo in China on December 22. As part of SM Line’s Pacific Northwest Service, the vessel made stops in Shanghai, Pusan, Vancouver and Seattle before calling in Portland. SM Line will complete its rotation with stops in Pusan and Kwangyang.
“We are excited to welcome SM Line’s maiden voyage to Portland. Their weekly container service provides an important option for regional shippers and will better connect Oregon businesses to global markets,” said Curtis Robinhold, the Port of Portland’s executive director. “It is such an encouraging sign to see Terminal 6 busy and productive.”
The first vessel call included nearly 200 containers being imported, more than 70 export containers heading to Korea, and 330 empty containers for local shippers to utilize for exports on future vessel calls.
While items will vary, the most common goods to leave Oregon in containers include hay and animal feed, agricultural commodities, and wood and paper products. Auto parts, furniture, bedding and lighting, and footwear and apparel are frequent imports that arrive on containers.
In addition to weekly container service, Terminal 6 will continue to operate as a multi-use facility that can handle containers, auto imports and exports, and breakbulk cargo – large items unloaded piece by piece, rather than in bulk like grain or in containers.
Along with the new SM Line service, the Port moves autos, grain and other bulk items at its three marine facilities. The Port also continues to partner with BNSF Railway and air cargo partners like Cathay Pacific Cargo and ANA Cargo to move goods via rail and air.