• Inland waterway freight transport decreased in most seaports and inland ports in 2020.
• The development was less severe in seaports, as the results for Rotterdam (-2%), the North Sea Port (-6.1%), Hamburg (-6.1%) and Constanţa (-2%) show. The port of Antwerp even held IWT volumes constant.
• In major Rhine and Danube ports, the average decrease in IWT was 8%, mainly as a result of the pandemic. The largest European inland port, Duisburg, recorded an 11.3% reduction in its inland waterway transport. The second largest European inland port, Paris, recorded a 9.7% decrease.

 
 

MAIN EUROPEAN SEAPORTS


    Sources: Port Statistics, Eurostat [iww_go_aport], CBS
    * For most ports: data from 2019; Moerdijk: data from 2018; Szczecin, Zeebrugge, Brugge: data from 2016
     

     
    ROTTERDAM

    • Rotterdam, the largest European seaport, remains the market leader in the Hamburg-Le Havre range by total maritime cargo throughput as it holds 36.6% of market shares, followed by Antwerp (19.4%), Hamburg (10.6%) and Amsterdam (8%).13 The volumes of loaded or unloaded IWT cargo at the port of Rotterdam decreased by 2% to 149.7 million tonnes in 2020 (compared to 152.8 million tonnes in 2019). The liquid cargo segment increased by 15%, while the dry cargo segment decreased by 14%. Container transport decreased by 5%. As observed in previous years, outgoing traffic continues to play an important role at the port (almost 70%). In 2020, 92,552 inland vessels visited the port of Rotterdam.
    •  

      FIGURE 1: INLAND WATERWAY TRANSPORT IN THE SEAPORT OF ROTTERDAM (IN MILLION TONNES)


      Source: Port of Rotterdam based on CBS
       

      FIGURE 2: INLAND WATERWAY TRANSPORT IN THE SEAPORT OF ROTTERDAM PER CARGO SEGMENT (IN MILLION TONNES) *


      Source: Port of Rotterdam based on CBS
      * General cargo is not taken into account in these calculations. In 2020, the volume transported for general cargo amounted to 4.9 million tonnes.

       
       

    ANTWERP

    • In 2020, 56,583 inland vessels frequented the port of Antwerp (compared to 56,585 in 2019). The IWT goods traffic at the port of Antwerp remained stable in 2020, reaching a volume of 101 million tonnes (compared to 101.3 in 2019). The share of imports increased slightly while exports decreased marginally. Overall, compared to 2010, an increase of 15% in total IWT traffic at the port can be observed.
    • The modal split for total maritime throughput (but excluding industrial traffic) in 2020 was as follows: 45% road, 47.3% IWT and 7.7% rail (compared to the following figures in 2019:  47% road, 44.7% barge and 8.4% rail).
    • As in 2019, the main IWT market segments at the port in 2020 were petroleum products, chemicals and containers. The first two make up for more than half of the total river traffic at the port. Containers come close behind with a share of 25% of total river traffic.
    • Despite the Covid pandemic, imports of petroleum products increased by 28.5% in 2020 compared to 2019, while imports of metal products (-22.4%), fertilizers (-5.7%), chemicals (-4.1%) as well as crude minerals and building materials (-12.5%) decreased. On the export side, the situation was different, with the crude minerals and building materials segment recording a strong increase (+55.4%) and petroleum products sustaining a limited decrease. However, export of metal products has also strongly decreased (-29.9%).
    • The overall positive results for petroleum products can be explained by the few exceptionally good months for the transport of such goods to and from the port (March, November and December 2020). The main driver for such positive results was the decrease in oil prices.
    • Overall, solid fuels have been following a downward trend since 2010, driven by the energy transition. While reaching a high peak in 2017, volumes of metal products have decreased since then and sustained the most important loss in 2020 (-29%) of all other cargo segments. This negative result can be explained on the one hand by trade limitations (import quotas in particular) which, since Q3 2019, have led to strong declines in maritime volumes. The Covid crisis came as an additional factor which further affected demand, particularly in the automobile industry, thereby leading to a major decline in transport for this cargo segment.
    • With regard to building materials, volumes have increased since 2015. For this segment, 2020 was quite particular since it recorded exceptionally good results (February 2020) but also extremely low ones (December 2020). Overall, the first half year 2020 was rather positive, while the second part of the year remained stable compared to the other years.
    • Container volumes remained stable in 2020 compared to 2019 but in general have been following an upward trend.
    •  

      FIGURE 3: INLAND WATERWAY TRANSPORT IN THE SEAPORT OF ANTWERP (IN MILLION TONNES)


      Source: Port of Antwerp
       

      FIGURE 4: INLAND WATERWAY TRANSPORT IN THE SEAPORT OF ANTWERP PER CARGO SEGMENT (IN MILLION TONNES) *


      Source: Port of Antwerp
      * Ro/ro, general and not assigned goods are not taken into account in these calculations (in 2020, the volume transported for these three cargo types amounted to 5.1 million tonnes, mostly attributed to conventional goods).

       
       

    NORTH SEA PORT

    • In the North Sea Port (Ghent, Terneuzen, Borsele, Flushing), total river traffic amounted to 54.95 million tonnes in 2020, a 6.1% decrease compared to 2019, mostly due to the Covid pandemic. In 2020, 41,446 inland vessels called at the port (compared to 47,000 in 2019). While in normal circumstances the evolution of seagoing and inland traffic is the same, it can be observed that inland waterway traffic was hit to a lesser extent than seagoing traffic (-11% compared to 2019), the latter also having to cope with the impact of Brexit.
    • Regarding inland waterway traffic at the port, dry bulk registered a small decline (-0.5%), mostly related to reduced volumes of minerals and building materials at the beginning of the Covid crisis, as a result of the first lockdown which lasted from March until May 2020. During this period, the construction industry was indeed at a standstill. On the liquid bulk side, the decline was stronger (-8.4%) mainly due to a decrease in liquid petroleum products. This is an indirect effect of the Covid crisis, which impacted transport movements and thereby use of liquid petroleum products. Transport of containers increased by 4.3%. It is worth noting that a decline of 39% was also observed for conventional goods. This was mostly due to a decrease in products from the metallurgical sector. The steel industry was indeed hit quite strongly by the crisis.
    •  

      FIGURE 5: INLAND WATERWAY TRANSPORT IN THE NORTH SEA PORT (IN MILLION TONNES)


      Source: North Sea Port
      * Ro/ro and conventional cargo are not taken into account in these calculations (in 2020, the volume transported for these two cargo types amounted to 1.99 million tonnes, mostly attributed to conventional cargo).

       
       

    HAMBURG

    • Volumes transported by IWT decreased by 6.1% in 2020 (8.3 million tonnes) compared to 2019 (8.9 million tonnes) in the port of Hamburg. This result is mainly driven by the strong decrease in export volumes (-23.5%), while the import volumes increased (+13.6%). Of course, this is mostly linked to the Covid pandemic.
    • Overall, liquid cargo suffered the most from the pandemic, with a 23.4% decrease in transport volumes compared to 2019, which can be explained by the reduced transport volumes for coke and petroleum products (-24.3%). This market segment was strongly affected in many regions in Europe.
    • Dry cargo traffic remained rather stable, but had already sustained negative results in 2019, in particular coal transport, as a result of the shift away from coal as a source of electricity generation in Germany. In 2020, the downward trend observed for coal transport continued (-63.1%). This decrease seems to have been compensated by an increase in building material transport volumes (+16.4%), as well as secondary raw materials and waste (+38.4%). Overall, both dry and liquid cargo have, however, been following a decreasing trend since 2015.
    • The situation is more positive for container transport. Container transport increased by 8.9% and has been following an increasing trend, at a slow pace, since 2015.
    • In 2020, hinterland traffic consisted of 92 million tonnes of transported goods. With a share of 50.7%, railway transport is ahead of truck transport with 40.3% and inland waterway transport with 9%.
    •  

      FIGURE 6: INLAND WATERWAY TRANSPORT IN THE SEAPORT OF HAMBURG (IN MILLION TONNES)


      Source: Statistical Office of Hamburg
       

      FIGURE 7: INLAND WATERWAY TRANSPORT IN THE SEAPORT OF HAMBURG PER CARGO SEGMENT (IN MILLION TONNES) *


      Source: Statistical Office of Hamburg
      * General cargo is not taken into account in these calculations (in 2020, the volume transported for this cargo type amounted to 0.3 million tonnes).

       
       

    CONSTANŢA

    • In Constanţa, 10,344 inland vessels called at the port in 2020 (10,395 in 2019). Inland waterway transport decreased by almost 2%, to reach 14.9 million tonnes.
    • Mainly dry cargo is transported in the port of Constanţa, with a share above 90% of the total goods transported. Dry cargo volumes registered a slight increase compared to 2019 while liquid cargo registered a 27.3% decrease. Container, Ro/ro and general cargo amounted to 330 thousand tonnes in 2020, mostly attributed to general cargo. Indeed, container traffic in the port of Constanţa is low and has sustained a constant decrease since 2010.
    •  

      FIGURE 8: INLAND WATERWAY TRANSPORT IN THE SEAPORT OF CONSTANŢA (IN MILLION TONNES)


      Sources: Port of Constanţa / Romanian Statistical Office
       
       
       

MAIN EUROPEAN INLAND PORTS

    RHINE PORTS

      TABLE 1: INLAND WATERWAY TRANSPORT IN MAJOR RHINE PORTS (IN MILLION TONNES) AND RATE OF CHANGE 2020/2019

       20172018201920202020/2019
      Duisburg52.248.147.842.4-11.3%
      Cologne10.78.99.19.10%
      Mannheim9.77.57.96.9-12.7%
      Strasbourg8.05.97.56.8-9.5%
      Neuss8.07.66.96.5-5.8%
      Karlsruhe7.26.46.96.2-10.1%
      Ludwigshafen5.66.16.66.8+3.0%
      Basel5.84.76.15.1-16.4%
      Mulhouse4.84.44.94.2-14.3%
      Kehl3.53.94.24.4+4.8%
      Mainz2.93.23.73.6-2.7%
      Krefeld3.43.33.63.0-16.7%
      Wesseling2.62.02.72.5-7.4%
      Total124.4112.1118.1108.5-8.0%

      Sources: Destatis, Port de Strasbourg, Swiss Rhine ports, Port de Mulhouse
      The “total” relates only to the ports mentioned in the table, not all Rhine ports.
       

      TOTAL YEARLY WATERSIDE TRAFFIC (IN MILLION TONNES)


       

    DUTCH PORTS

      TABLE 2: INLAND WATERWAY TRANSPORT IN MAJOR DUTCH PORTS (IN MILLION TONNES) AND RATE OF CHANGE 2020/2019

       20172018201920202020/2019
      Rotterdam159.2152.8152.8150.6-1.4%
      Amsterdam58.4 60.1 60.0 53.1-11.6%
      Vlissingen13.4 15.3 19.9 17.0-14.8%
      Terneuzen14.1 14.1 14.4 14.3-0.4%
      Moerdijk9.510.2 10.2 10.9+7.1%
      Sittard-Geleen4.26.3 6.8 6.4-6.4%
      Velsen4.84.6 6.4 6.6+3.2%
      Urk3.75.1 6.0 2.5-58.2%
      Dordrecht4.75.3 5.7 6.4+13.1%
      Delfzijl5.66.4 5.2 4.2-19.1%
      Nijmegen2.42.8 4.1 5.1+24.8%
      Hengelo (O)4.53.6 4.0 3.8-3.9%
      Gennep3.53.7 3.2 3.2-1.5%
      Stein3.63.6 3.1 3.1-1.1%
      Sluis3.43.3 2.8 3.0+7.7%

      Source: CBS
       

      TOTAL YEARLY WATERSIDE TRAFFIC (IN MILLION TONNES)


       

    FRENCH AND BELGIAN PORTS

      TABLE 3: INLAND WATERWAY AND RATE OF CHANGE 2020/2019

       2018201920202020/2019
      Antwerp99.3101.3101.00%
      Paris22.125.322.8-9.7%
      Liège16.016.013.9-12.0%
      Strasbourg5.97.56.8-9.5%
      Rouen4.85.55.9+6.0%
      Brussels5.25.24.9-5.3%
      Mulhouse4.44.94.2-14.3%
      Namur5.14.63.8-16.3%
      Le Havre3.23.42.7-19.6%
      Marseille2.52.82.0-31.0%
      Dunkirk2.42.52.9+16.0%
      Metz1.92.22.0-7.2%
      Lille1.81.92.0+8.0%
      Lyon1.41.11.0-3.4%
      Villefranche-sur-Saône 0.80.80.8-7.0%
      Chalon-sur-Saône and Mâcon 0.80.80.7-10.7%
      Thionville0.60.70.6-17.7%
      Total178.2186.5178.0-4.5%

      Sources: Ministère de la Transition écologique, Voies Navigables de France, Ports de Paris, Port de Liège, Port de Strasbourg, Port de Mulhouse, Port de Bruxelles, Port de Namur, Nouveau port de Metz, Port de Lille, Port de Dunkerque.
      The “total” relates only to the ports mentioned in the table, and not to all French and Belgian ports.
       

      TOTAL YEARLY WATERSIDE TRAFFIC (IN MILLION TONNES)


       

    DANUBE PORTS

      TABLE 4: INLAND WATERWAY TRANSPORT IN MAJOR DANUBE PORTS (IN MILLION TONNES) AND RATE OF CHANGE 2020/2019

       20172018201920202020/2019
      Constanţa12.112.114.514.50%
      Galati6.36.45.94.5-23.7%
      Ismail5.14.74.33.2-24.0%
      Smederovo3.23.64.02.6-35.0%
      Linz4.23.23.43.4+4.0%
      Bratislava2.11.51.71.5-11.7%
      Tulcea1.31.71.61.2-26.9%
      Pancevo1.11.41.52.0+35.0%
      Novi Sad1.21.01.41.6+15.5%
      Regensburg1.51.11.31.5+11.9%
      Reni1.11.31.30.8-38.3%
      Vienna1.11.01.20.8-17.3%
      Drobeta Turnu Severin1.21.11.21.0-16.6%
      Călăraşi-Chiciu0.70.71.10.9-11.0%
      Prahovo0.91.01.11.2+8.0%
      Budapest-Csepel1.10.91.11.2+5.5%
      Măcin-Turcoaia0.80.80.91.2+18.6%
      Baja0.60.30.50.8+67.3%
      Total45.543.848.043.9-8.5%

      Sources: Danube Commission market observation, Romanian Statistical Institute, Hungarian Statistical Office, Port Governance Agency of Serbia
      The “total” relates only to the ports mentioned in the table and not all Danube ports.
       

      TOTAL YEARLY WATERSIDE TRAFFIC (IN MILLION TONNES)


       

    SAVA PORTS

      TABLE 5: INLAND WATERWAY TRANSPORT IN MAJOR SAVA PORTS (IN THOUSAND TONNES) AND RATE OF CHANGE 2020/2019*

       20172018201920202020/2019
      Other ports (Serbia)-6829492,000+111%
      Sremska Mitrovica (Serbia)189234560486-13%
      Slavonski Brod (Croatia)117131199138-31%
      Sabac (Serbia)170149149170+14%
      Brčko (Bosnia and Herzegovina - BaH)1369810365-37%
      Sisak (Croatia)60666755-18%
      Oil refinery Brod (BaH)9.7298.10-100%
      Total6821,3902,0352,91443%

      Source: Sava Commission
      * In 2015, the port of Šamac in Bosnia and Herzegovina reported bankruptcy, therefore no transshipment of cargo has been recorded since then. Since 2018 and 2019, data for smaller transshipment places in Serbia started to be collected which explains the increasing amount of transshipped goods recorded in Serbia for those years.

       

      TOTAL YEARLY WATERSIDE TRAFFIC (IN THOUSAND TONNES)