Maritime ports freight and passenger statistics

Data from March 2020.

Planned update: February 2021.

Highlights


3.6 billion tonnes of freight were handled in EU ports in 2018.

The Netherlands remained the largest maritime freight transport country in Europe in 2018.

Rotterdam, Antwerpen and Hamburg maintained their positions as Europe's top 3 ports in 2018.

The total number of passengers in EU ports was 410 million in 2018, a rise of 5.6 % from the previous year.

Gross weight of seaborne freight handled in all ports in 2018 (in tonnes per inhabitant)

This article presents the latest statistical data on freight handling and passenger traffic in ports in the European Union (EU), the United Kingdom, the EFTA countries Iceland and Norway and the candidate countries Montenegro and Turkey. It also covers maritime transport flows with the main partner geographical areas, as well as individual results for major European ports. This article contains data for 2018.



Full article


Increase in seaborne goods and passengers in EU ports

The total gross weight of goods handled in EU ports is estimated at 3.6 billion tonnes in 2018, an increase of 3.6 % from 2017. According to the latest figures, the EU port freight activity seems to have resumed on a slight path towards recovery in 2014, a trend that was sustained in all quarters of 2017 and 2018 (Figure 1). The gross weight of goods handled in EU ports in 2018 reached a new peak, overpassing the volumes handled in the years immediately preceding the economic downturn in Europe in 2009, with 219 million tonnes (+6.5 %) more than in the peak reached in 2007.

Figure 1: Gross weight of seaborne freight handled in all ports, EU-27, 2002-2018
(million tonnes)
Source: Eurostat (mar_mg_aa_cwh) and (mar_go_qm)

The Netherlands remained the largest maritime freight transport country in Europe in 2018, while Rotterdam, Antwerpen, Hamburg, Amsterdam, Algeciras, Marseille and Izmit maintained their positions as the 7 largest freight ports.

Among the EU member states, the seaborne freight-per-capita ratio varied from 35.1 tonnes per inhabitant in the Netherlands to 2.4 tonnes per inhabitant in Poland in 2018. The EU average was 8.1 tonnes per inhabitant. However, Norway recorded the highest ratio of the countries reporting maritime data to Eurostat, with 40.6 tonnes of seaborne goods handled per inhabitant in 2018 (Figure 2).

Figure 2: Gross weight of seaborne freight handled in all ports, 2018
(tonnes per inhabitant)
Source: Eurostat (mar_mg_aa_cwh)

The number of passengers passing through EU ports increased by 5.6 % between 2017 and 2018, to almost 410 million passengers (Figure 7). After falling regularly until 2015, the total number of passengers embarking and disembarking in EU ports recovered in the last three years to reach similar levels than in 2008 (+0.2 % in 2018 compared with 2008).

With almost 85 million passengers passing through its ports, Italy was the major seaborne passenger country in Europe in 2018, followed by Greece with 73 million passengers. These two leading seaborne passenger countries had a combined share of more than one third of the total number of seaborne passengers embarking and disembarking in the EU countries (Table 4).

The number of vessels calling in the main EU ports in 2018 is estimated at above 2.2 million, an increase of 8.0 % from the previous year. In the same period, the estimated gross tonnage (GT) of the vessels calling in EU ports grew by 4.8 % to 16.2 billion GT (Tables 7 and 8). During the same period, the average size of vessels calling in the main EU ports decreased by 3.0 % to almost 7 383 GT in 2018 (Figure 9).

The Netherlands is EU’s largest maritime freight transport country

The Netherlands has reported the largest volumes of seaborne freight handling in Europe every year since overtaking the United Kingdom in 2010. At 605 million tonnes, the volume of seaborne goods handled in Dutch ports represented 16.8 % of the EU total in 2018. The Netherlands was followed by Spain and Italy. Their respective shares were 14.4 % and 13.9 % of the EU total (Figure 3).

Figure 3: Gross weight of seaborne freight handled in all ports, 2008, 2017 and 2018
(million tonnes)
Source: Eurostat (mar_mg_aa_cwh)

Among other countries reporting maritime freight data to Eurostat, the United Kingdom and the candidate country Turkey handled 483 and 454 million tonnes of goods in 2018, placing these two countries between Italy and France in terms of total tonnage of seaborne goods handled.

Compared with 2017, the largest relative increases in port freight activity among the EU Member States were recorded by Poland (+17.6 %), Spain and Latvia (both +6.8 %) and Romania (+6.3 %). Only five countries registered a decrease in port freight activity: Malta [1] (-22.0 %), Cyprus (-11.6 %), Bulgaria (-10.0 %), Portugal (-3.2 %) and Germany (-1.0 %).

All in all, 10 Member States recorded decreases in port freight activity in the ten-year period between 2008 and 2018. The highest relative falls were observed for Croatia (-26.2 %), Cyprus (-12.7 %), and France (-12.3 %). The United Kingdom also registered a fall of -14.0 % within the same period. In contrast, Poland registered the largest relative increase (+88.0 %), followed by Lithuania (+44.2 %), Slovenia (+39.7 %), Portugal (+38.4 %), Greece (+24.9 %) and Spain (+24.7 %). Turkey also reported a noticable increase by +48.8 %.

Inward movements of goods to the EU countries increased by 4.0 % to more than 2.1 billion tonnes in 2018 compared with 2017, while outwards movements increased by 3.0 % to 1.5 billion tonnes. Nonetheless, inward movements still accounted for 59.6 % of the total tonnes of goods handled in the EU ports (Figure 4). Liquid bulk goods, such as crude oil and oil products, made up a substantial proportion of the inward tonnage.

Figure 4: Gross weight of seaborne freight handled in all ports by direction, 2018
(% share in tonnes)
Source: Eurostat (mar_mg_aa_cwhd)

More seaborne goods are unloaded from than loaded onto vessels in the majority of EU countries. Croatia and Cyprus had the highest shares of unloaded goods in 2018, with respective shares of 74 % and 72 % of the total tonnes of seaborne goods recorded as inward movements to their ports. Iceland also had a high share of 70 %. In contrast, the three Baltic countries, Bulgaria, Finland, Romania and the EEA country Norway all had high shares of outward movements of goods of the total movements of tonnes to their ports.

Liquid bulk made up 35.9 % of the total cargo handled

Liquid bulk goods accounted for 35.9 % of the total cargo handled in the main EU ports in 2018 (Figure 5), followed by containerised goods (23.9 %), dry bulk goods (23.2 %), and goods transported on Ro-Ro mobile units (11.1 %). The largest volumes of liquid bulk goods were handled in the Netherlands (275 million tonnes), followed by Italy (191 million tonnes) and Spain (180 million tonnes). Croatia recorded the highest share of liquid bulk goods as a percentage of the total tonnages passing through its main ports in 2018 (58.6 %), mainly reflecting large volumes of inward movements of crude oil from Russia and Turkey.

Figure 5: Gross weight of seaborne freight handled in main ports by type of cargo, 2018
(% share in tonnes)
Source: Eurostat (mar_mg_am_cwhc)

With 138 million tonnes, Dutch ports also handled the largest volumes of dry bulk goods in the EU in 2018, followed by Spain with 117 million tonnes. Even so, the tonnages of dry bulk goods handled in both the Netherlands and Spain in 2017 were lower than the 181 million tonnes reported by Turkey. Latvia had the highest share of dry bulk goods as a percentage of the total tonnages in 2018 (58.9 %), mainly reflecting large volumes of outward movements of coal from its ports.

Containers were the dominant type of cargo handled in German and Belgian ports in 2018, with shares of 43.0 % and 40.7 % respectively of the total cargo passing through the ports of the two countries. The largest volumes of containerised goods, however, were handled in Spanish and Dutch ports, with 155 million tonnes and 129 million tonnes, respectively. The two top container countries were followed by Germany with 127 million tonnes and Belgium with 110 million tonnes of containerised goods.

The share of Ro-Ro mobile units in the total tonnage of goods was the highest for Ireland (30.5 %), Denmark (29.4 %) and Sweden (27.0 %), reflecting the importance of Ro-Ro ferry traffic in the seaborne transport of these countries. In tonnage terms, Italy (96 million tonnes) recorded the largest EU volumes of goods transported on Ro-Ro mobile units in 2018. However, these volumes were lower than tonnage of Ro-Ro mobile units recorded in the United Kingdom (108 million tonnes).

Rotterdam, Antwerpen and Hamburg stayed top ports

Rotterdam, Antwerpen and Hamburg, all located on the North Sea coast, maintained their positions as Europe's top three ports in 2018, both in terms of the gross weight of goods handled and in terms of the volume of containers handled in the ports. The 20 largest cargo ports accounted for 38 % of the total tonnage of goods handled in the main ports of the reporting countries in 2018, a slight decrease compared with 2017. The largest port in Europe, Rotterdam in the Netherlands, on its own accounted for just above 9 % of the total tonnage handled in the countries reporting maritime freight data to Eurostat (Table 1).

The 7 largest cargo ports in Europe remained the same in 2018 compared with 2017. Among these ports, only Hamburg and Izmit recorded a decrease of 1.0 % and 0.4 %, respectively, in the tonnes of goods handled in 2018 compared with 2017 . In contrast, Algeciras and Antwerpen recorded substantial increases of 6.2 % and 5.4 % from 2017, respectively.

Table 1: Top 20 ports handling freight, 2013-2018
(million tonnes)
Source: Eurostat (mar_mg_aa_pwhd)

Among the other top 20 cargo ports, the port of Piraeus recorded the largest growth with 12.7 % compared with 2017 and entered the top 20 cargo ports as the 19th largest European port in terms of gross weight of goods handled in 2018. On the other hand, the ports of Le Havre (-8.5 %), Bergen (-7.9 %) and Valencia (-6.3 %), reported substantial decreases in port activity in 2018.

With 13.6 million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) handled, Rotterdam was Europe’s largest container port in 2018 (Table 2). Rotterdam was followed by Antwerpen with 10.8 million TEUs and Hamburg with 8.7 million TEUs handled in total. All in all, 4 of the top 20 container ports recorded decreases in the number of TEUs handled compared with 2017. In relative terms, the largest decrease was seen by Felixstowe (-9.1 %). The largest relative increases were recorded by London (+22.2 %), Izmit (+21.4 %), Piraeus (+18.6 %), Gioia Tauro (+18.1 %), Gdansk (+17.8 %) and Barcelona (+14.2 %).

Table 2: Top 20 ports handling containers, 2008-2018
(thousand TEUs)
Source: Eurostat (mar_mg_am_pvh)

The most specialised of the top 20 cargo ports in handling containers were Bremerhaven, Piraeus and Valencia; the most specialised in handling liquid bulk goods were Botas and Bergen. While inward activity was prevalent in most of the top 20 ports, the ports of Bergen and Botas handled substantial outward movements of crude oil. In addition, Bremerhaven and Valencia recorded slightly more outward than inward movements of containerised goods.

All in all, 11 of the top 20 cargo ports of the reporting countries, in 2018 were located on the Mediterranean, 8 on the North Sea coast of Europe and the remaining port on the Atlantic coast (Map 1). The composition of the national port infrastructure will sometimes determine whether a country is represented on the top 20 list of cargo ports or not. Denmark and Finland, for instance, are countries with a large number of medium-sized ports, all handling volumes of goods lower than the 44 million annual tonnes required to make the top 20 list.

Map 1: Main cargo ports by gross weight of freight handled, 2018
Source: Eurostat (mar_mg_aa_pwhd)

Most EU maritime freight transport is with extra-EU partners

Unlike statistics presented earlier in this article, the data in Table 3 and Figure 6 do not present the total handling of goods in ports (inward movements plus outward movements in the ports), but estimate the seaborne transport of goods between the main European ports and their partner ports. As far as possible, double-counting of the same goods being reported as outward transport in one port and inward transport in another port is excluded in these figures (see data sources).

Table 3: Gross weight of seaborne freight transported to/from main ports, 2013-2018
(million tonnes)
Source: Eurostat (mar_mg_am_cwt)

At 3 billion tonnes, the EU seaborne transport of goods increased by 3.1 % from 2017 to 2018. The majority of these goods (70 %) were transported to or from ports outside the EU (international extra EU-27 transport), making maritime transport the most important mode for long distance transport of goods to or from the EU, in tonnage terms. Cross-border transport between ports in the EU (international intra EU-27 transport) made up 19 % of the maritime transport of goods in 2018, while transport of goods between national ports made up 8 % of the total EU maritime transport (Figure 6).

Figure 6: Seaborne transport of freight between main ports in the reporting country and their partner ports grouped by main geographical areas, 2018
(% share in tonnes)
Source: Eurostat (mar_mg_am_cwtt)

In countries with long shorelines or a large number of islands, like Italy, Greece, Denmark as well as Norway, the share of national seaborne transport tend to be relatively high (from 14 % to 26 %). Countries like Malta, Latvia, Estonia, Finland and Sweden, on the other hand, have high shares of international intra-EU transport (above 58 %), because their main maritime freight transport partners are found within the EU. Other countries, like the Netherlands, Romania, Belgium, Croatia, Bulgaria, Slovenia or France (above 70 %), have high shares of extra-EU transport, based on their geographical position or the "deep sea" nature of the transport activities prevailing in their main ports.

Map 2 illustrates the largest maritime transport flows between the EU and the main international partners. As shown in the map, all of the EU’s top 10 maritime flows of goods in 2018 were inward flows, with the exception of the outward flows from the United Kingdom and the East Coast of the USA. In declining order, these were the inward flows of goods from the Baltic Sea area of Russia (5.8 % of the total extra-EU seaborne transport), the outward and inward flows to/from the United Kingdom (5.2 % and 4.8 %, respectively), inward flows from the East Coast of the USA (4.1 %), Brazil (4.0 %), Norway (3.9 %), the Black Sea area of Russia (3.5 %), Turkey (3.3%), China (2.8 %) and the outward flow to the East Coast of the USA (2.4 %). The 12th and 13th largest seaborne transport flows in 2018 were the outward flow of goods to Turkey (2.1 %) and China (1.9 %).

Map 2: Main extra-EU-27 flows by gross weight of freight handled in main ports, EU-27, 2018
Source: Eurostat - Maritime transport - Goods (mar_go)

Increase in number of seaborne passengers

The number of passengers passing through EU ports increased by 5.6 % between 2017 and 2018, to almost 410 million passengers (Figure 7). After falling regularly until 2015, the total number of passengers embarking and disembarking in EU ports recovered in the last three years to reach similar levels than in 2008 (+0.2 % in 2018 compared with 2008) (Table 4).

Unlike goods movements, where broadly 60 % of goods are unloaded and 40 % loaded in the EU ports, the difference between the number of passengers disembarking ("inwards") and embarking ("outwards") in EU ports is generally small. This reflects the fact that seaborne passenger transport in Europe is mainly carried by national or intra-EU ferry services, with the same passengers being counted twice in the port throughput statistics (once when they embark the ferry in one EU port and once when they disembark the same ferry in another EU port).

Figure 7: Seaborne passengers embarked and disembarked in all ports, EU-27, 2002-2018
(million)
Source: Eurostat (mar_mp_aa_cph)

At 85.4 million and 72.5 million seaborne passengers, respectively, Italian and Greek ports accounted for a combined share of 38.5 % of the total number of passengers embarking and disembarking in EU ports in 2018 (Table 4). As a consequence, Italy and Greece remained the main countries in terms of EU seaborne passenger transport. Italy recorded a substantial increase in passengers embarking and disembarking compared with 2017 (+15.6 %). The two leading countries were followed by Denmark with 43.8 million passengers embarking and disembarking in 2018, an increase by 2.1 % from 2017.

Table 4: Seaborne passengers embarked and disembarked in all ports, 2008-2018
(thousand)
Source: Eurostat (mar_mp_aa_cph) and Eurostat (mar_mp_aa_cphd)

Compared with the previous year, the largest relative increases in seaborne passengers transport were recorded by Bulgaria (+20.9 % from a low base), Spain [2] (+16.7 %) and Italy (+15.6 %) in 2018. In contrast, the largest relative decreases were recorded in Romania (no passenger transported in 2018), Cyprus (-60.9 %, from low base), Slovenia (-21.1 %, from low base) and Belgium (-11.3 %).

Compared with the seaborne passenger volumes in 2008, 11 Member States recorded decreases in 2018. The highest relative falls were observed for Romania (no passenger transported in 2018), Bulgaria (-64.6 % from a low base), Cyprus (-81.1 %), Slovenia (-51.4 %), Greece (-20.4 %) and Ireland (-11.5 %). In contrast, Latvia registered the largest relative increase (+121.9 %). The neighbouring countries of Estonia and Lithuania also reported a substantial rise in seaborne passengers of 61.4 % and 52.6 %, respectively, over the last decade.

Although cruise passengers made up only 3.3 % of the total number of passengers embarking and disembarking in EU ports in 2018, these passengers play an important role in the ports and countries where the cruise traffic is concentrated. Close to 78 % of the total number of cruise passengers embarking and disembarking in EU ports in 2018 did so in the ports of one of the 3 countries Italy, Spain, Germany. Cruise passengers on day excursions in EU ports are not included in these figures.

Dover was the largest European passenger port in 2018

The top 20 passenger ports accounted for just above 37 % of the total number of passengers embarking and disembarking in the reporting countries in 2018, an increase of 2.7 % from 2017 (Table 5). The port of Dover regained its position as the largest European passenger port overpassing Helsinki, which registered a 1.7 % decrease in the number of passengers embarking and disembarking from 2017 to 2018. The port of Puttgarden recorded the largest relative decrease in the number of passengers between 2017 and 2018 (-4.9 %), while the ports of Napoli and Messina recorded the largest increases in the same period (+14.7 % and +14.6 %, respectively). The port of Reggio Di Calabria also registered a large increase by 8.5 %.

Table 5: Top 20 ports embarking and disembarking passengers, 2018
(thousand)
Source: Eurostat (mar_mp_aa_pphd)

The time series in Tables 4 and 5 show that some countries and ports have experienced substantial decreases in the number of seaborne passengers over time. These sudden drops are typically caused by structural changes, such as openings of new bridge or tunnel connections and subsequent closure of ferry links. The rapid growth in low cost flights in recent years might be another cause behind the declining trend in the number of seaborne passengers over time.

Most EU seaborne passenger transport is within national borders

Table 6 and Figure 8 show the breakdown of seaborne passenger transport between national, international intra-EU and international extra-EU transport for each reporting country (excluding cruise passengers). Unlike the statistics presented in tables 4 and 5, these figures do not reflect the sum of embarkation and disembarkation of passengers in ports, but estimate the transport of passengers between ports. As far as possible, double-counting of the same passengers being reported as embarking in one port and disembarking in another port within the same statistical aggregate is excluded in these figures (see data sources).

Table 6: Passengers (excluding cruise passengers) transport to/from main ports, 2013-2018
(thousand)
Source: Eurostat (mar_mp_am_cft)

Estimated at more than above 219 million passengers, the seaborne passenger transport to and from the main EU ports increased by 4.3 % from 2017 to 2018 (Table 6). Both of the main EU seaborne passenger countries, Italy and Greece, saw increases in the estimated number of seaborne passengers transported to or from their main ports compared with 2017 (+15.8 % and +3.5 %, respectively). Italy registered the largest relative increases in maritime passenger transport, followed by Spain[3] (+9.0 %).

Figure 8: Seaborne transport of passengers (excluding cruise passengers) between main ports in the reporting country and their partner ports grouped by main geographical areas, 2018
(% share in number of passengers)
Source: Eurostat (mar_mp_am_cftt)

The majority of the seaborne passenger transport in the EU is carried out between ports situated in the same country (61 %), reflecting the dominant role of national ferry services in the EU seaborne passenger transport (Figure 8). In general, countries with busy ferry connections to and from well-populated islands will have both a large volume of seaborne passenger transport and a high share of national maritime passenger transport. This applies to the two leading maritime passenger countries, Italy and Greece, as well as countries like Portugal, Croatia and Spain.

Countries with ferry connections to other EU countries, such as Latvia, Lithuania, Finland, Poland, Sweden, Estonia and Denmark, naturally have high shares of international intra-EU transport. Belgium, the Netherlands, Ireland, France and Spain recorded the highest shares of extra-EU seaborne passenger transport in 2018, with Spain having ferry links with Morocco and the other countries with the United Kingdom.

Vessels calling in the main EU ports

Figure 9: Average size of vessels calling at main ports, EU-27, 2002-2018
(gross tonnage per vessel)
Source: Eurostat (mar_mt_am_csvi)

The number of vessels calling in main EU ports in 2018 is estimated at above almost 2.2 million, an increase of 8.0 % from the previous year (Table 7). In the same period, the estimated gross tonnage (GT) of the vessels calling in EU ports grew by 4.8 % to almost 16.2 billion GT (Table 8). During the same period, the average size of vessels calling in the main EU ports decreased by 3.0 % to almost 7 383 GT in 2018 (Figure 9).

Table 7: Vessels in main ports, 2013-2018
(number)
Source: Eurostat (mar_mt_am_csvi)

Greece had the highest number of port calls in 2018 (479 000 vessels), followed by Italy (428 000 vessels), Denmark (325 000 vessels) and Croatia (280 000 vessels). On the other hand, Italy recorded the largest gross tonnage of vessels calling at its main ports in 2018 (2.7 billion GT), followed by Spain (2.3 billion GT).

Table 8: Gross Tonnage of vessels in main ports, 2013-2018
(thousand)
Source: Eurostat (mar_mt_am_csvi)


Vessels in the category “Cargo, non-specialised” (which includes Ro-Ro vessels) made the highest share of calls in main EU ports in 2018, followed by passenger vessels, liquid bulk vessels and container vessels (Figure 10). The non-specialised cargo vessels also had the highest share of the combined gross tonnage of the vessels calling in main EU ports, followed by container vessels and liquid bulk vessels (Figure 11). However, cruise ships had by far the largest average gross tonnage per vessels (62 000 GT) calling in EU main ports in 2018, followed by container vessels (38 000 GT) and specialised cargo vessels (23 600 GT).

Figure 10: Vessels in main ports by type of vessel, 2018
(% share in number)
Source: Eurostat (mar_mt_am_csvi)

For passenger vessels, there are substantial differences in the average size of vessels making port calls in various countries, with some countries, like Germany, Croatia and Italy, having a large number of small passenger vessels calling in their main ports. A similar variation is found for container vessels. Due to a dominance of feeder services, some countries, like Ireland, have a low gross tonnage for container vessels even though the number of vessels is quite high. In other countries, like Malta, Belgium, Germany, France, the Netherlands and Greece, the average size of container vessels calling in the main ports is much higher, reflecting a higher share of deep-sea oriented container transport or the presence of hub ports.

Figure 11: Vessels in main ports by type of vessel, 2018
(% share in gross tonnage)
Source: Eurostat (mar_mt_am_csvi)



Data sources

This article presents the trends in freight and passenger transport in European Union (EU) ports and also includes figures for the United Kingdom, Iceland, Norway, Montenegro and Turkey. The content is based on data collected within the legal framework for EU maritime transport statistics, i.e. Directive 2009/42/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 6 May 2009 on statistical returns in respect of carriage of goods and passengers by sea and later amendments. Directive 2009/42/EC is a recast of the original Council Directive 95/64/EC of 8 December 1995.

The EU-27 aggregates in the statistics refer to the total of 22 maritime Member States. The Czechia, Luxembourg, Hungary, Austria and Slovakia have no maritime ports. Norway and Iceland provide Eurostat with data as members of the European Economic Area (EEA). The EEA country Liechtenstein has no maritime ports. Montenegro and Turkey provide data as candidate countries.

“Main ports” are ports handling more than 1 million tonnes of goods or more than 200 000 passengers annually (however, data for some smaller ports may be included in the published results). Data are presented at level of “statistical ports”. A statistical port consists of one or more ports, normally controlled by a single port authority, able to record ship and cargo movements.

Explanatory notes for tables:

Basic results and derived indicators (such as growth rates and shares in % of total) in the tables are rounded. However, the figures are based on the non-rounded original data. As a result, the sum of shares in % of total, as shown in the tables, is not necessarily equal to 100%. 2018 freight data reported by Malta are provisional and likely to be revised.

Explanatory notes for countries are available in the metadata on the Eurostat website.

Figures 1, 2, 3 and 4: Starting from 2011, the figures for Spain include data for a number of minor regional ports outside the state-controlled port system. Turkey started to report data on seaborne transport in 2008 and Montenegro in 2012. Data have been partially estimated by Eurostat for a number of French ports for the period 2009-2016.

Figure 5, Tables 1 and 2:

  • Liquid bulk: liquefied gas, crude oil, oil products, other liquid bulk goods.
  • Dry bulk: ores, coal, agricultural products (e.g. grain, soya, tapioca), other dry bulk goods.
  • Large containers: 20 ft freight units, 40 ft freight units, freight units > 20 ft and < 40 ft, freight units > 40 ft.
  • Ro-Ro mobile units:

a) Mobile self-propelled units: road goods vehicles and accompanying trailers, passenger cars, motorcycles and accompanying trailers/caravans, passenger buses, trade vehicles (including import/export motor vehicles), live animals on the hoof, other mobile self-propelled units.

b) Mobile non-self-propelled units: unaccompanied road goods trailers and semi-trailers, unaccompanied caravans and other road, agricultural and industrial vehicles, rail wagons, shipborne port-to-port trailers and shipborne barges engaged in goods transport, other mobile non-self-propelled units

  • Other cargo: forestry products, iron and steel products, other general cargo.

The category “large containers” includes containers having a length of 20 feet or more. Smaller containers are included in the category “other cargo”. As a general rule, the container figures are limited to lift-on lift-off containers (Lo-Lo).

Data are not available for Iceland.

Tables 3 and 6, Figures 6 and 8: Data are not available for Iceland. Gross weight of freight figures for France in period 2013-2016 contain Eurostat estimates. Please note that the recording of unknown port of loading or unloading may have influenced the transport figure calculations, as well as the shares of maritime transport allocated to intra-EU, extra-EU and National maritime transport. In order to estimate maritime transport of goods/passengers between ports, the issue of "double counting" (the transport of the same goods or passengers being declared by both the port of loading/embarking (as outward movements) and the port of unloading/ disembarking (as inward movements) has to be addressed. Generally, when both the port of loading/embarkation and the port of unloading/disembarkation are situated within the same statistical aggregate, only the incoming flows of goods/passengers declared by ports are summed up to determine the total maritime transport within the aggregate ("elimination of double counting"). The algorithm for the elimination of double counting is applied at statistical port level. Thus, the total maritime transport per country excludes the double counting of maritime transport within the country. Similarly, the total maritime transport for the EU excludes the double counting of national and international intra-EU maritime transport (see metadata on the Eurostat website for more information).

Figure 7 and Table 4: Data include (cruise and non-cruise) passengers starting and ending a voyage. Cruise passengers on excursion in ports (cruise transit) are excluded. Starting from 2011, the figures for Spain include data for a number of minor regional ports outside the state-controlled port system. Starting from 2018, the figures for Spain include data for a number ports that were not reported in the previous years. Netherlands only provide the number of non-cruise passengers (“ferry passengers”). The passenger figures for Portugal do not include cruise passengers until 2011. Passenger data for Norway cover international traffic only.

Table 5: Data include (cruise and non-cruise) passengers starting and ending a voyage. Cruise passengers on excursion in ports (cruise transit) are excluded.

Table 6 and Figure 8: See note for Table 3 above. 2016 data for Spanish ports include cruise passengers. Starting from 2018, the figures for Spain include data for a number ports that were not reported in the previous years. French data for 2014 and 2015 contain Eurostat estimates. Passenger transport data for Malta do not include international transport to/from the port of Valletta. Passenger data for Norway cover international traffic only. Data are not available for Iceland.

Figures 10 and 11:

  • Liquid bulk: oil tanker, chemical tanker, LG tanker, tanker barge, other tanker.
  • Dry bulk: bulk/oil carrier, bulk carrier.
  • Container: full container.
  • Cargo, specialised: barge carrier, chemical carrier, irradiated fuel, livestock carrier, vehicle carrier, other specialised.
  • Cargo, non-specialised: reefer, Ro-Ro passenger, Ro-Ro container, other Ro-Ro cargo, combination carrier general cargo/passenger, combination carrier general cargo/container, single-decker, multi-decker.
  • Passenger: passenger (excluding cruise passenger vessels).
  • Cruise passenger: cruise ships only.
  • Offshore activities: offshore supply.
  • Other: dry cargo barges, tugs, miscellaneous, unknown type of vessel.

Special symbols used in the tables

':' not available '-' not applicable

Context

The content of this statistical article is based on data collected within the framework of the EU maritime transport statistics Directive, i.e. Directive 2009/42/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 6 May 2009 on statistical returns in respect of carriage of goods and passengers by sea (OJ L141 of 6.6.2009, page 29), which is a recast of the original Council Directive 95/64 (EC) of 8 December 1995.

The basic legal act (Directive 2009/42/EC) was amended by:

The following legal acts include respectively the last official version of the list of ports and some dissemination aspects:

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Maritime transport (mar)
Maritime transport - main annual results (mar_m)
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Maritime transport - vessel traffic (mar_tf)
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Notes

  1. Data are provisional.
  2. Data coverage improved between 2017 and 2018.
  3. Data coverage improved between 2017 and 2018.