U.S. shipping line Matson has launched a new vessel service with major implications for the Port of Oakland. The Port said today that Matson’s CCX Service, which began July 27, is noteworthy on two fronts:
- It’s the first China-to-Oakland service for longtime Port of Oakland carrier Matson.
- It’s the third first-call service introduced at Oakland this year.
First calls are where shipping lines make their initial U.S. stop after sailing from Asia. The new Matson service will call Chinese ports in Ningbo and Shanghai. It will make stops in Long Beach and Honolulu after visiting Oakland. According to the Port, the service will depart from China three out of every five weeks.
Matson’s move is seen as reaffirmation of increasing demand for a Northern California trade gateway. It’s expected to grow containerized cargo business in Oakland which is already on a record pace in 2021.
“Matson is a big part of the Port’s business and we’re gratified that they want to expand our relationship by opening a Northern California gateway to China,” said Port of Oakland Maritime Director Bryan Brandes. “The fact that it’s a first call underscores the importance cargo owners place on Oakland.”
Honolulu-based Matson, known in Oakland for U.S.-to-Hawaii service, operates China routes from Southern California. The new CCX service reflects exploding U.S. demand for imports from China. First-call status indicates that importers are targeting Oakland.
First-call vessel services discharge most U.S. import containers at their initial American port of call. They’re delivered locally by truck or sent to the U.S. interior by rail. The Port of Oakland introduced two previous first-call services from Asia earlier this year.
Oakland is on pace to handle 2.6 million containers in 2021, which would be an all-time annual record. A new first-call service from Matson could help ensure the mark is surpassed.
Matson projected 12-to-14-day ocean transits for its China-Oakland service. Ships will call at an Oakland marine terminal operated exclusively for the carrier’s vessels.