Analysis of recent trends in EU shipping and analysis and policy support to improve the competitiveness of short sea shipping in the EU

Client: European Commission DG Mobility and Transport
Dates: 2014-2015
Participants: CENIT, VITO, COWI Belgium


Short Sea Shipping (SSS) is considered as a strategic component of the transport system since it can provide an important contribution to smart, sustainable and inclusive growth in the EU (White Paper). Nevertheless, the sector is facing some problems hampering the development of SSS. By removing these problems, it is expected that the growth of SSS will lead to the reinforcement of the position of EU shipping, minimization of road congestion, energy consumption as well as improved and guaranteed territorial continuity of the EU.

The objectives of the assignment are to analyze the current trends of the EU Short Sea Shipping sector; identify the main factors affecting the growth of the sector; analyze the evolution of SSS market regarding main drivers, supply developments and demand requirements; and propose policy actions and recommendations to reinforce the position of SSS in EU meeting the objectives of the White Paper.

The achievement of the abovementioned objectives provided a thorough picture of the current situation of the overall SSS sector, and particularly, for the different market segments and sea-basins.