Container transport increasingly important

22/01/2009 15:00

The proportion of goods transported to the Netherlands by sea in containers has more than doubled over the past 15 years. Food products in particular are more often transported in containers. Electronics and household products for everyday use have always been transported in shipping containers.

Container transport in short sea and long-haul shipping

Container transport in short sea and long-haul shipping

More than 11 percent of imported products arrive in containers

In 2007, more than 11 percent of goods imported were transported in container ships, as opposed to just over 5 percent in 1992. After a small dip in the early 21st century, the average annual growth in container transport was more than 10 percent since 2002. Sea container transport is efficient, notably because shipping containers are easy to handle and can be moved from sea ships to inland vessels and freight trains without too much effort.

Ten largest goods categories in container transport by ship, April 2007

Ten largest goods categories in container transport by ship, April 2007

Mainly products for everyday use

More than half of goods transported in containers are products for everyday use. In April 2007, more than 200 thousand containers arriving in Dutch ports were scanned. Over 14 percent were filled with electronics and household goods. Fruit, meat, fish, dairy and corn were also frequently transported in shipping containers. The same applies to clothes, shoes and small consumer goods.

Ten categories of goods mostly transported in containers, April 2007

Ten categories of goods mostly transported in containers, April 2007

Shoes and clothes always in containers

Products like shoes, clothes and drinks like wine were always imported into the Netherlands in containers in 2007. The same applies to nearly 95 percent of meat, fish and dairy products.

Peter Smeets