Italy – An Important Hub for European Freight Traffic

by | May 7, 2024 | Allgemein, Facts & Fun, Topstory | 0 comments

Italy is not only the third largest economy in the EU. Four of Europe’s nine transnational transport corridors also pass through the country. This makes Italy an important freight transport hub in Europe. Find out what this means in detail here.

In 2022, transport performance amounted to around 151 billion tonne-kilometres – an increase of 35% compared to the record low of 2016. In 2021, Italy ranked 8th in the world for exports and 11th for imports. This also benefits road freight transport, which employs over 350,000 people. In addition, there are more than 140,000 employees in the postal and courier sector. Finally, most goods (more than 60 percent) are transported by truck; within Italy, the figure is as high as 80 percent.


Rising costs and lack of resources

However, higher costs for diesel, electricity, warehouse rent and personnel have led to a general increase in transportation costs.The shortage of resources is particularly difficult in almost all areas. It is accelerating the progressive merging of logistics companies, of which around 84,500 still remain.This is leading to a shortage of transport capacity, particularly in road freight transport.

In 2021, Italy achieved an export surplus of around 60 billion dollars. The country exported the most goods to Germany, followed by France and the USA. Germany was also ahead of France and China in terms of imports. As trade with Africa is also growing, imports and exports from the EU to North Africa can be easily organized via Italy.

Most highways in Italy are subject to tolls. Photo: Adobe Stock


Fashion and pasta

Italy’s main exports are medicines, motor vehicles, fashion – and pasta. Italy is the world’s largest exporter of pasta and processed tomatoes. Around 30 percent of all pasta worldwide comes from Italy. In addition to pasta, unglazed ceramics are also an export hit. Here, as with tanned cattle and horse hides, the Italians are world export champions.

The main imported goods are fuels, oil, motor vehicles, electrical appliances, chemicals and pharmaceutical products. Italy is also the world’s largest importer of rolling tobacco as well as wool and combed wool yarns for the fashion industry.


Well-developed roads

Italy has a network of more than 500,000 kilometers of well-developed roads and freeways (a good 7,000 kilometers), putting it in 18th place in the global ranking. Most freeways are subject to tolls. The amount of the toll depends on the length of the distance traveled.


What load have you already driven through Italy with? Let us know in a comment!


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Stefan Kohl

Stefan Kohl

Every word a hit – Stefan has been writing for more than 20 years about this industry


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