B.C. exporters caught in container squeeze by booming COVID-19 recovery across Pacific

Jordan Atkins at the WTC Group Lindsey Terminal in Delta on Feb. 2. PHOTO BY ARLEN REDEKOP /PNG

By / Derrick Penner

Canadian exporters are being caught in a squeeze trying to get products out of the Port of Vancouver, according to logistics companies in the middle.

It’s being caused by a surge of imports flooding into North America from China’s manufacturing sector, which quickly bounced back from a COVID-19-related downturn, and a rush to return empty shipping containers to keep up with factory output, said Jordan Atkins of the logistics firm WTC Group.

“We’ve essentially, since November, seen a squeeze in empty container availability in order to get cargo loaded,” said Atkins, WTC’s vice-president, which coincided with increasing export rates that have soared beyond what some local exporters can pay.