International road haulage over 4 percent up in 2017

In 2017, 199 million tonnes of goods were transported by road from and to the Netherlands. This is an increase of 4.3 percent on the previous year. Lorries from the Netherlands as well as from other countries carried more cargo in 2017, according to new figures available at Statistics Netherlands (CBS).

Last year, foreign road hauliers carried 95 million tonnes of cargo into and out of the Netherlands, representing an increase of 5.1 percent relative to 2016. Road transport by Dutch lorries went up by 3.5 percent. Cross-border transport by Dutch hauliers saw an increase again for the first time, after two years of decline. The share of foreign hauliers in total weight transported rose again last year. Between 2008 and 2017, it went up from 38 to 48 percent. The increase in transport from and to the Netherlands was mainly on account of lorries from Central and Eastern Europe (CEE countries). Total weight of transported goods to and from the Netherlands by these lorries almost tripled between 2008 and 2017.

Weight transported from and to the Netherlands by nationality of haulier (million tonnes)
 NetherlandsOther European countriesCEE countries
2008127.361.515.5
2009115.654.417.1
2010106.451.520
2011111.350.220.8
2012106.749.821.7
2013104.249.925.5
2014106.647.827.6
2015102.247.933.6
2016100.950.140.2
2017104.450.844.1

Bilateral transport

International transport by Dutch road hauliers mainly involves bilateral traffic. Of the weight carried by Dutch lorries in cross-border transport in 2017, 92 percent was loaded or unloaded in the Netherlands. Lorries from CEE countries accounted for a share of 61 percent of bilateral transport last year. This share was lowest among hauliers from Romania, namely 35 percent. Of the cargo loaded in the Netherlands, only 10 percent was transported to this country. Two-thirds of the goods were destined for Germany, Belgium and France.

International road haulage per country by type of transport (%)
 Bilateral transportThird country transport
Greece99.30.7
France98.61.4
Great Britain97.12.9
Sweden94.75.3
Italy94.65.4
Germany94.55.5
Spain93.66.4
Belgium93.56.5
Finland92.57.5
Netherlands91.68.4
Austria90.99.1
Ireland89.810.2
Denmark89.310.7
Czech Republic88.611.4
Portugal74.225.8
Croatia73.626.4
Hungary66.433.6
Poland6634
Slovenia65.734.3
Estonia6337
Latvia59.740.3
Luxembourg5842
Slovakia56.443.6
Bulgaria38.661.4
Lithuania36.163.9
Romania34.965.1

More Polish hauliers

Just like Dutch hauliers, lorries from the other European countries mainly engage in international haulage from and to their own country (91 percent on average). In 2017, 40 percent of the weight transported to and from the Netherlands was on account of Belgian and German lorries, versus 62 percent in 2008. The share of Belgian road hauliers almost halved in this period. German lorries transported 26.5 million tonnes of cargo in and out of the country in 2017, which represented a share of 28 percent. Between 2008 and 2017, the share of weight transported by Polish hauliers rose from 11 to 27 percent and is now almost as large as Germany’s share. Road hauliers from Poland carried 25.4 million tonnes of goods from and to the Netherlands in 2017.