California Jobs & Economy

California’s seaports are North America’s primary intermodal gateway to Asia and Transpacific trade.  Maritime industry activities at California’s public seaports are responsible for employing more than a half-million people in the state.  Nationwide, more than two million jobs are linked to maritime industry business conducted at California’s public seaports. 

  • The businesses operating at the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, known as the San Pedro Bay Port Complex, generate 992,000 jobs in Southern California (1 in 9), and 2.8 million jobs throughout the nation.   Marine terminals and ocean carriers operating at the San Pedro Bay Ports not only handle 73% of the West Coast’s containerized market share by providing access to the large and diverse economies of Southern California, but facilitate transloading and intermodal service to the American heartland and the entire Southwest, moving 32% of the nation’s market share. The Port of Los Angeles has been the number one container port in the United States since 2000.
  • The Port of Los Angeles generates 1.1 million jobs in California and 1.6 million jobs in the United States.
  • The Port of Los Angeles moved 9.5 million TEUs in 2018 – the most cargo moved annually by a Western Hemisphere port.
  • The Port of Long Beach supports more than 316,000 jobs—about one in every 22 jobs—in Southern California.  It provides approximately $14.5 billion in regional wages and salaries annually. 
  • Statewide, Port of Long Beach activities support about 371,000 jobs.
  • The Port of Long Beach supports almost 600,000 direct, indirect and induced jobs, providing nearly #31 billion in income, and generating nearly $90 billion in economic output in our five-county region.
  • In the five-county region, port activity generates $6 billion in state and local taxes, and another $5.9 billion in federal taxes.

Maritime business in Southern California is diversified beyond just intermodal containers in San Pedro Bay and at the Port of San Diego and at Port Hueneme. Terminals at these Ports are moving millions of new automobiles, specialized cargo, and California exports.

In the San Francisco Bay, the Ports of Oakland, Redwood City, Richmond, Benicia and San Francisco serve greater Northern California, as well as the river Ports of Stockton and West Sacramento. The Port of Oakland leads trade in this region as one of the nation’s premier intermodal export gateways.  Oakland’s close proximity to California’s central valley and its productive agricultural sector anchors a strong, balanced intermodal portfolio.

  • The Port of Oakland handled 2,546,351 TEUs in 2018.
  • The Port of Oakland and its partners support more than 73,000 jobs in the region and impact 827,000 jobs across the country.