Economy - Figures


The number of airline passengers increased from 76.2 million in 2017 to 79.6 million in 2018. There was a slight decline in tonnes transported by air: from 1,839,139 tonnes in 2017 to 1,832,808 ton in 2018.

Airports in the Netherlands saw 79.6 million passengers arrive or depart in 2018, up from 76.2 million in 2017. Compared to 2008, the number of passengers increased by 58 percent. Eindhoven Airport in particular has handled more travellers over the past decade. In 2018, more than 3.5 times as many passengers flew via this airport compared to ten years previously.

In 2018, the volume of air cargo processed amounted to more than 1.8 million tonnes, 0.3 percent down on the previous year. Compared to 2008, the volume was up by 13 percent. Schiphol and Maastricht Aachen are the only two airports in the Netherlands processing air cargo.

Road haulage was up by 2.1 percent in 2018. Dutch lorries carried 680 million tonnes of goods. Both domestic transport and international transport to and from the Netherlands rose. The weight of goods in domestic transport rose more sharply (2.6 percent) than of goods carried in and out of the country (1.5 percent). For every 100 tonnes of goods transported in 2018, 81 tonnes were loaded and unloaded within Dutch borders.

Turnover in the transport sector was up by 5 percent in 2018 relative to 2017. Turnover growth was recorded in all industries but was strongest in inland navigation, amounting to nearly 13 percent. Due to periods of low water in the second half of 2018, more vessels were needed to carry the cargo. As a result, the overcapacity was reduced and inland skippers were able to charge higher freight rates. They also received a low-water surcharge for the higher costs due to the low water level. The lowest water levels were seen in Q4 2018. Turnover rose by over 30 percent in that quarter, the sharpest increase since the start of the century.

Despite the low water levels in 2018, the total weight transported within the Netherlands by inland vessels increased by 7.3 percent year-on-year. On the other hand, weight transported internationally declined by 5.8 percent to 238 million tonnes. Outward transport went down in the second half of the year due to the low water levels. The total weight carried already dropped by nearly 2 percent in the first half of the year. Inward transport and transit goods, on the other hand, increased in weight in the first half of 2018 compared to the same period in 2017.

During the first three quarters of 2018, 450 million tonnes of goods were transhipped at Dutch seaports. This is an increase of 0.4 percent relative to the same period one year previously. Just as in 2017, growth was mainly supported by incoming and outgoing container shipments. Throughput of these goods rose by nearly 7 percent to over 98 million tonnes in Q1 through Q3 2018. In contrast to the increase in container shipments, there was a decline in tonnage of dry bulk. Throughput of both coal and ores dropped by 6 and 10 percent respectively over the same period.

Note: The published weights for shipping do not include the unladen weight of, for example, the container in which the goods are transported. Weights given for road transport, air freight, inland shipping and freight transport by rail do include all packaging, and the unladen weight of containers, swap bodies, goods pallets etc.

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In terms of rail freight transport, Germany is by far the most important country for loading and unloading cargo. In 2018, over 21 million tonnes of goods were transported in and out of Germany by rail. Two-thirds of outbound rail freight transport to Germany consisted of coal and metal ores. Italy comes in second place with a total of 5.5 million tonnes of goods in throughput. Belgium and the Czech Republic follow at a great distance with over 1.6 and nearly 1.3 million tonnes in throughput, respectively.


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Opening page and header: © Hollandse Hoogte / Martijn Beekman

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Economy - Trends: © Hollandse Hoogte / Marcel Krijgsman

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Explanation of symbols

. Data not available
* Provisional figure
** Revised provisional figure
x Confidential
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0 (0.0) The number is smaller than half of the selected unit
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2018–2019 2018 to 2019 inclusive
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