National Statistics

Port freight annual statistics: 2017 final figures

Statistics on freight handled by UK ports during 2017.


Port freight annual statistics: 2017 final figures tables

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Final figures on freight handled by UK ports for 2017.

Total tonnage levels for all UK ports remained level in 2017 compared to 2016 at 481.8 million tonnes handled.

The UK continues to import more than it exports. A total of 248.3 million tonnes entered UK ports (both major and minor) from international sources, compared to 138.5 million tonnes exported.

For UK major ports in 2017:

  • liquid bulk goods, which account for 40% of total tonnage, decreased 1% overall
  • crude oil handled has more than halved since 2000 to 86.3 million tonnes and continues to fall
  • unitised traffic marginally increased to 24.1 million units, the fifth consecutive year of growth
  • container units marginally increased to a record high of 5.9 million units
  • roll-on roll-off traffic remained level compared to 2016, with 18.2 million roll-on roll-off units passing through UK major ports.

Accompanying this release are new data series tables. These were redesigned following a user feedback exercise conducted in March 2018. The majority of the tables now feature filters giving users greater flexibility with the presented data. In addition, most tables also come with new worksheets containing the underlying data, allowing advanced users to conduct their own analysis.

From September, we will be publishing similar new versions of the quarterly tables as outlined in the user feedback exercise. We will also no longer be publishing a PDF summary on a quarterly basis. If you have any comments or would like to discuss this with us, please contact us.

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Maritime and shipping statistics

Published 22 August 2018