Dutch road hauliers carried record weight in 2021

Trucks are ready for cargo loading
In 2021, Dutch road hauliers transported 702 million tonnes of goods, 2.6 percent more than in 2020. This is the highest weight ever measured. Only in 2007 did the total weight carried also exceed 700 million tonnes. Over four fifths of this tonnage was transported within the Netherlands. Belgium is the main foreign destination for Dutch hauliers. Statistics Netherlands (CBS) reports this on the basis of newly released figures.

Weight of goods carried by Dutch hauliers
JaarDevelopment (year-on-year % change)

In 2021, Dutch lorries transported 572 million tonnes of goods (81.5 percent) within the Netherlands. The weight carried domestically increased by 2.4 percent year on year. Following a slight decrease in 2020, domestic haulage rose to its highest level ever. International road transport rose from 125 million tonnes in 2020 to nearly 130 million tonnes in 2021, i.e. a 3.5-percent increase.

Weight of goods carried by Dutch hauliers
JaarDomestic transport (million tonnes)International transport (million tonnes)

Haulage of agricultural and food products further up

Agricultural goods and food products constitute 30.0 percent of the weight transported by Dutch lorries. In 2021, this type of transport was up by 4.4 percent year on year. The carriage of sand, crude minerals and building materials combined (accounting for one fifth of all transported goods) rose by 1.2 percent. Haulage of transport equipment, machinery and other goods such as general cargo grew by 6.5 percent and accounted for 30.6 percent of the total.

Weight of goods carried by Dutch hauliers
GoederenNSTR2021 (million tonnes)2020 (million tonnes)2019 (million tonnes)
Agricultural and food products210.7201.8196.7
Sand, crude minerals and building materials141.2139.6136.6
Chemical products69.268.276.5
Metals and petroleum (products)37.940.541.0
Transport equipment, machinery and other goods including general cargo214.9201.8206.2

More goods carried abroad

In 2021, cross-border transport to and from the Netherlands rose by 3.7 percent year on year. This increase was almost entirely on account of outbound transportation (up by 6.2 percent). The tonnage of freight transported to France rose by 11.8 percent and to Belgium by 14.7 percent. Belgium was therefore the main foreign destination for Dutch hauliers in 2021, instead of Germany. The weight of goods carried into Germany remained virtually unchanged last year. Road haulage to the United Kingdom declined further, by 8.6 percent.
The volume of goods carried into the Netherlands increased slightly as well last year, by 0.9 percent.

Weight of goods carried by Dutch hauliers by destination
losLand2021 (million tonnes)2020 (million tonnes)2019 (million tonnes)
United Kingdom1.11.21.4
Other countries2.82.82.9

More commercial haulage, transport on own account lagging behind

In 2021, Dutch commercial road hauliers transported 566 million tonnes of goods, 3.0 percent more than in the previous year. They accounted for 80.6 percent of the total weight carried by Dutch lorries. Transport on own account - with goods transported by companies themselves - rose by 0.9 percent to nearly 136 million tonnes in 2021.