2018 Integrated Report – On track towards a better Railway


Freight transport and logistics

Anticipated marketdevelopment (%)



German freight transport (based on tkm)



European rail freight transport (based on tkm)



European land transport (based on revenues)



Global air freight (based on t)



Global ocean freight (based on TEU)



Global contract logistics (based on revenues)



The data for 2018 and 2019 are based on information and estimates available as of February 2019.
Expectations for 2019 are rounded off to the nearest half percentage point.

In 2019, a continuing strong increase in demand for transport in the German freight transport market is to be ex­­pect­­ed. In view of the ongoing positive development of domestic demand and foreign trade, economic growth may continue at a slightly reduced rate if we assume that there are no cat­­­astrophic events, for example from Brexit or the tariff conflicts. The overall market will also continue to be characterized by inter- and intramodal competitive pressure and ongoing resource bottlenecks.

In order to develop rail freight transport in Germany, it is also expected that, in addition to the overall positive economic trends, there will be volume growth because of shifts away from road transport caused by the train-path price support element of the master plan for rail freight transport, along with the significant increase in road tolls. Following the severe strain caused by low waters in the year under review, inland waterway transport will also benefit from the strong positive baseline effect and the expected increase in coal imports through the ARA ports (Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Antwerp) following the end of coal mining in Germany.

  • The growth of the European rail freight transport market may be supported above all by intra-European trade with the associated momentum for intermodal transport.
  • Moderate growth is expected in the European land transport market in 2019. This is influenced primarily by the current political situation in Western Europe whilst in Eastern Europe further strong growth is expected.
  • The expectations for the global air freight market in 2019 remain limited as a result of the flat general market growth in the fourth quarter of 2018. As far as capacity in the air freight market is concerned, shortages are not anticipated given the continuing supply of new aircraft and addition of new routes. Rates are expected to remain at a strong level.
  • In terms of global ocean freight, volume growth slightly below the level of the previous year is expected in 2019. It is expected that freight rates will continue to increase as shipping costs will continue to rise as a result of new regulations on low-sulfur ocean freight (IMO 2020).
  • We expect continuously high growth particularly in the Asia/Pacific, Americas and European regions in contract logistics.