2020 European road freight transport survey
German cloud-based logistics software provider Transporeon has conducted a survey of 1,200 road freight forwarders, which found three quarters of companies experiencing a decline in transport volumes due to the COVID-19 and almost four in ten anticipating full year sales declines.
More specifically, while 67% of the surveyed forwarders reported increased turnover in 2019, only half that amount (32%) expect business revenues to grow in 2020. In fact, 38% of service providers expect a decline in turnover for the current year. By way of comparison, only 10% of the companies recorded declining revenues in 2019. The actual extent of the losses at the end of the year will depend on how quickly the economy recovers from the restrictions of recent months, whether new waves of infection can be contained, and the shutdown measures further eased, the report highlighted.
With respect to transport capacity, about 77% of those surveyed are experiencing a decline in transport volumes due to the COVID-19, which is having a significant impact on transport capacity. Almost 30% of the forwarders surveyed currently see more free capacity on the market due to the crisis. This trend is confirmed by the Transporeon’s Transport Market Monitor, which recorded a historic high in capacity in spring 2020. Transport prices remain at a correspondingly low level during the same period. Reacting to this development, only 28% of forwarders plan to increase their transport capacity in 2020. Last year, the figure was 46%.
On a brighter note, the report found digitalisation as a positive development, with 74% of forwarders saying it will improve their business. Nearly 50% said the best optimisation would be cutting waiting and unloading times, while the second most important measure was time slot management. Emissions, however, remain a problem. Nearly 43% of respondents are unable to calculate them, while 72% said less than 10% of their customers ask for emissions data.
The more detailed survey results can be accessed here.