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Transport industry in Belgium – statistics & facts

Road transport accounts for about 75 percent of Belgium's inland freight transport. Much of the remaining share can be attributed to inland waterways. Belgium is home to Antwerp, Europe's second-largest cargo port, and is well-positioned between two of Europe’s economic powerhouses: Germany and France. The volume of maritime cargo handled at the Port of Antwerp peaked in 2019 and dipped slightly in 2020.

Spotlight on ports

Antwerp, along with many other coastal and inland ports connect to Belgium's extensive highway network forming a vital transportation hub. Many highways act as transition routes to other countries such as Germany, France, and the Netherlands. This makes Belgium an ideal location for businesses in the logistics and transportation industries. However, the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic hit freight forwarders in the Benelux region hard in 2020: 68 percent of respondents in the Benelux region felt the negative impact of the pandemic on their business.

Spotlight on vehicles

Belgium has high levels of vehicle ownership. There are roughly 7.6 million registered vehicles for a country of 11.5 million inhabitants, and the country is among the leading markets for passenger vehicle sales in Europe. That said, motor vehicle sales in Belgium dipped to around 570,000 units in 2020. Compared to other European countries, the electric vehicle market has grown slowly. In the Benelux region, Belgium needs to improve its electric vehicle charging infrastructure per population and vehicle. The price of car ownership in Belgium has become equal across fuel types and it is expected that electric vehicle sales will accelerate under appropriate charging investments by the government. The electric bus fleet in Belgium tripled between 2018 and 2020.

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Transport industry in Belgium

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