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The European Rail Freight Transport Market 2021

In 24 country chapters the current situation of rail freight transport in Europe, with a special focus on the development of different operators: The cumulative transport performance of competitors increased by 5% p.a. between 2015 and 2020. Even the Covid-19 year 2020 brought competitors only a moderate decline of 5% compared to 2019.

The market shares of the former state-owned railways (incumbents) in their home markets have steadily declined over the last five years, while competitors have recorded dynamic growth. In the Covid-19 year, private competitors, which are mainly active in combined transport, were able to weather the crisis better in part because intermodal transport recovered quickly after initial difficulties. Conventional transport goods such as steel and coal, on the other hand, which are often served by the state railways, suffered more severe slumps. On the other hand, incumbents were often supported by state aid and were able to recover more quickly from the crisis.

Specifically, the study contains:

  • Comprehensive overview of the European rail freight market, including key trends and key development points.
  • Analysis and benchmark of the main rail freight operators in Europe
  • Detailed analysis of rail freight in 24 country markets, including: 
      • Development of basic parameters (rail freight performance, GDP, modal share).
      • Outlook for the medium term, assessment of market drivers
      • Development of transport performance per destination (national, export and import, transit)
      • Overview of the rail freight infrastructure and the most important transport corridors
      • Development of freight groups transported by rail
      • Development of market shares of former state railways as well as competitors
      • Rail freight turnover of the main players measured in EUR
      • Information on the most important changes in the operator landscape
      • Overview of locomotive and freight wagon fleet per country
  • Factsheets on 15 operators

Optionally available with the data annex in Excel format

  • All numbers concerning fleets, deliveries and market shares are transparently and comprehensively available
  • Apply the data sets for an individual evaluation and configuration or to access and supplement available market data

Find an exemplary data annex here.

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Date: 13/07/2021

Report type: MultiClient Study*

Data format: Excel  PDF 

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* Our compact MultiClient studies provide a harmonised view and definitions of the markets, prepare data on current stocks and forecasts, document current trends and provide detailed and comprehensive information on market and industry developments.