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Transportation industry in Italy - Statistics & Facts

Transportation and logistics have been fundamental in Italy since the earliest times, with much of the infrastructure built by the Romans still in existence beneath the motorways of Italy today. Italy’s favorable position, in proximity to the Middle East and Africa, has also eased the development of the Italian transport industry, promoting it as a Euro-Mediterranean logistic platform for container handling, particularly for trade with northern and southern regions.

Currently, the most used infrastructure for imports and exports are road infrastructures, such as motorways and freight hubs. The Italian transportation industry offers a wide range of freight hubs including the freight hub of Orbassano and the freight hub of Verona, also known as "Quadrante Europa". According to official data, road freight transport accounted for over 86 percent of the total inland freight transport in 2017.

The alpine tunnels offer additional insights into trade between Italy and countries such as France, Austria, and Switzerland. In 2017, the majority of the freight volume transported across the Alps traveled through the border between Italy and Austria. Indeed, the distribution of vehicle traffic in the Italian Alpine tunnels shows that, in 2014, among the five main alpine tunnels, the Brennero absorbed 41.1 percent of all traffic. The Brennero pass was one of the most important traffic connections between Northern and Southern Europe. Currently under construction, the Brenner Base Tunnel was expected to increase the railway transport capacity on this crucial node.

The amount of freight carried by railway nationally in Italy peaked in 2018 at over 35 million metric tons. The railway network in Italy covers the entire country and enhance the transport of goods and the movement of passengers. In 2017, the railway network in use was 17.1 thousand kilometers long, 70 percent of which was electrified. As of 2019, the high-speed railway network had reached a length of over 1.1 thousand kilometers and was still under expansion.

Container traffic in Italy also shows a positive trend. Among the leading ten ports for container traffic in Italy, the port of Genoa handled more than 25 million metric tons of cargo in 2018. Thanks to its rail and road infrastructure, Italy could be considered a key player in the European transportation industry.


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