In 2016, 191 million tonnes of goods were transported by road to and from the Netherlands. But the share of Dutch trucks in the cross-border transits continued to decline, the national statistic office CBS reported on Wednesday.
The CBS said in particular that trucks from central and east European countries carried more cargo than in previous years.
Trucks registered in the Netherlands carried 101 million tonnes of goods in and out of the country in 2016, down 1% on the previous year. But there was a marked increase – almost 20% – in cargo carried by trucks registered in central and eastern Europe.
Goods transport by trucks registered elsewhere in Europe was only 3.9% higher and was generated largely by German-registered trucks carrying bigger loads.
In 2007, 19.4% of non-Dutch trucks entering the Netherlands in 2007 were from central and eastern Europe. Ten years later the figure had risen to nearly 45%. Polish-registered trucks accounted for 55% of the total, followed by Romania (7.7%) and Bulgaria (7.1%).
Some Dutch trucking companies have subsidiaries in central and eastern Europe, often to take advantage of cheaper local pay rates. Central and eastern European companies have also been accused of undercutting their western competitors.
The trucking sector will be exempt from new EU rules to stop social dumping throughout the EU until a separate agreement has been reached.