ISL European Container Traffic Model (ECTM)

The most complete source on European container traffic

European ports handle around 100 million TEU annually. This traffic includes both transshipment and hinterland traffic. Official statistics only cover TEU volumes and their seaborne origin and destination, but data on hinterland traffic is scarce.

ISL’s European Container Traffic Model (ECTM) closes this gap. For each European main port, it includes the following:

  • Shortsea and feeder traffic by country
  • Hinterland traffic by mode
  • Hinterland origin/destination (NUTS)
  • Inland terminal locations for rail and barge traffic
  • Direction (import/export)
  • Full/empty TEU

Frank van der Laan

Port of Rotterdam
ECTM data gives us insight into the developments in the important hinterland markets in Europe regarding total volume, modal split and market share.

For Ports

ECTM data gives ports unique insight into their market position, covering origin and destination of hinterland and seaborne traffic.


ECTM offers:

  • Market share analysis for hinterland, shortsea and deepsea traffic
  • Competitiveness analysis
  • Modal shift potential


Clients include Port of Rotterdam, Port of Antwerp, Grand Port Maritime de Dunkerque, Hamburg Port Authority and bremenports.


For Liner Operators

Partnering liner operators receive a detailed assessment of their regional market shares for carrier haulage hinterland and feeder traffic.


ECTM offers:

  • Analysis of carrier haulage market shares for hinterland and feeder traffic
  • Gateway port choice
  • Intermodal connections


Most major deepsea, shortsea and feeder liner operators active in European markets have cooperated with ISL on ECTM.

For public authorities

For infrastructure planning and traffic management, our Cargo Traffic Simulations based on ECTM data provide valuable insights.


ECTM offers:

  • Demand by transport corridor
  • Container traffic forecasts
  • Emissions monitor
  • Economic impact of ports in hinterland regions


ECTM data has been used in various projects for the European Commission, the German Federal Ministry of Transport and several regional authorities.

Further information

Download ECTM-Flyer

Dr. Sönke Maatsch
Thorsten Friedrich