Home » Port Houston Jumps to 5th Place in Ranking of Top U.S. Container Ports

Port Houston Jumps to 5th Place in Ranking of Top U.S. Container Ports

Port Houston has made significant progress in the competitive landscape of U.S. container ports, leaping from the seventh to the fifth spot in the ranking based on the number of twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) handled in 2022.

The announcement was made by Port Houston Chairman Ric Campo during the regular meeting of the Port Commission of the Port of Houston Authority held on May 2.

“Our import and export volume reached record numbers in 2022 and is considered one of the fastest growing ports in the U.S. in loaded imports and loaded exports, and Houston now owns a 7% market share of the total U.S. container business,” Campo said.

According to the Journal of Commerce’s rankings, Port Houston ranked fifth in loaded imports and third in loaded export containers for the year 2022. The growth trajectory extended across all trade lanes for Port Houston, with the Transpacific lane experiencing a notable surge of 25.7% in loaded imports. Similarly, the Transatlantic lane emerged as the top trade route for loaded exports, witnessing a remarkable growth of 20.5% in 2022.

Port Houston has been one of the biggest winners in U.S. container import volumes shifting east as prolonged labor negotiations at West Coast ports continue to impact trade flows. 

Chairman Campo reiterated the commitment of Port Houston’s leadership to ongoing investments in order to maintain competitiveness. “As cargo follows the path of least resistance, we must continue investing in our growth,” he said.

Further substantiating these remarks, Executive Director Roger Guenther provided a comprehensive update on the current state of operations across Port Houston’s public terminals in his monthly report to the commission. “Our activity remains solid, and I am proud and thankful for our team here at Port Houston that continues to deliver the quantity and quality of output that makes us successful each and every day,” Guenther stated.

Guenther also reported that cargo activities at Port Houston facilities remained robust in the first quarter of the year, with overall tonnage experiencing a 4% increase compared to the previous year. Container activity registered a 3% year-to-date growth, while the steel sector remained relatively stable, declining only by 2%.

In alignment with its commitment to future investments, the Port Commission approved several items on the agenda during the May 2 meeting, including operations, infrastructure, and other contracts totaling more than $30 million.

During the meeting, Port Commissioner Dean Corgey shared insights from a recent delegation trip to Brazil with officials from Port Houston and the City of Houston, including Mayor Sylvester Turner. Corgey emphasized the significance of the Houston Ship Channel and Port Houston’s stewardship of it, saying, “We export more than cargo, we export goodwill, American values, and hope.”

The Port Commission’s next regular monthly meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, May 23.

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