Rotterdam agrees efficient inland shipping partnership


The Port of Rotterdam Authority has signed a partnership agreement with Multimodal Coordination Foundation and Brabant Advice Centre (MCA Brabant) to boost container transport via inland shipping routes.

Over 8.6 million containers were transhipped in Port of Rotterdam during 2018, with more than 1 million being moved to North Brabant, one of Rotterdam’s most important hinterland regions.

According to a statement from Rotterdam, the transport of this cargo by road is placing increasing levels of pressure on its road networks.

Vincent Campfens, Port of Rotterdam, discusses digital ports in a recent Port Technology technical paper

By increasing the volume of freight carried via inland shipping routes, instead of by truck, Rotterdam projects that it will make the port and surrounding area more accessible, as well as increasing the efficiency of its logistics chain.

Emile Hoogsteden, Director of Containers, Breakbulk & Logistics at the Port of Rotterdam Authority, said: “Smart connections between the Port of Rotterdam and Brabant will result in structurally higher multimodal transport reliability, and this will contribute to the sustainable accessibility and growth of one of the most important logistics hotspots in the Netherlands.”



A feature of the collaborating organizations’ partnership, in 2019, will be the scaling-up of digital information exchange between the Port of Rotterdam and Brabant’s inland shipping terminals.

By sharing data about the arrival of sea-going vessels and containers, in addition to any delays impacting transport, all parties will be able to plan more effectively.


A visual representation of different transport routes around the Port of Rotterdam (Credit: POR)


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Hendrik-Jan van Engelen, Director of MCA Brabant, also commented: “Good connections by water with the Port of Rotterdam are essential in enabling the further growth of Brabant shippers and transport companies.

“This does not only take a lot of trucks off the roads; good connections also ensure the reliability of the total supply chain. We are very much looking forward to all initiatives that this partnership aims to set in motion.”

The partnership also continues a previous agreement made by the Port of Rotterdam Authority to bundle more container freight and transport it using a fixed sailing schedule.

Leading to the establishment of the West-Brabant Corridor in 2018, this link between deep-sea container terminals on Maasvlakte and facilities in Moerdijk, Oosterhout and Tilburg has already resulted in 20% more freight via inland vessels.

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