Bordering nine countries, Germany's central geographic position in Europe makes it the ideal location for logistics hubs and distribution centers. Germany is Europe's Nr. 1 logistics hub and is by far the largest logistics market in the EU in terms of revenues. Totaling almost EUR 230 billion, Germany's logistics market revenue is greater than France's and the UK's combined, Europe's 2nd and 3rd largest markets respectively. Germany's state-of-the-art infrastructure is also on top providing easy access to more than 500+ European consumers, from which roughly half are accessible by overnight delivery. Enterprises are optimistic that continued economic development will increase the demand for logistics services throughout the sector's various branches. Whether business requires the movement of goods by road, rail, waterway, or air, Germany provides a world-class logistics framework.
ROAD - German roads form the backbone of an efficient transportation infrastructure. In 2013, around 77 percent of all tonnage of goods was transported on Germany’s roads and highways. This amounts to more than 3.3 billion tons of cargo. Continuous investment in the road network is a high priority for the German government. During the period 2005-2015, around EUR 80 billion will be invested in a series of important projects, including the construction of 1,900 km and the upgrading of an additional 2,200 km of new limited-access highways and the construction or upgrading of around 5,500 km of other important federal highways.
RAIL - Rail transport covers about 9 percent of the market for hauled goods in Germany. This sub-sector reached a volume of 373.7 million tons in 2013, a 2.1 percent increase over 2012. During the same period, domestic transport reached 247.5 million tons, making up two-thirds of the total rail freight transport. Cross-border rail freight dispatches remained constant at 45.5 million tons in 2013, while rail freight deliveries to Germany increased markedly by 8.1 percent.
WATERWAYS - Two of the four largest seaports in Europe are located in Germany, making it Europe’s largest shipping market. Hamburg, Germany’s largest, handled a volume of 9.3 million containers (TEU), while the Ports of Bremen handled 5.8 million containers. In all, more than 500 million tons of goods passed through German seaports and inland ports in 2013 accounting for 7 and 5 percent respectively of the market for shipped goods in Germany. Ocean shipping accounted for 293 million tons and inland shipping for almost 227 million tons. Inland waterways play an important role and include main rivers such as the Rhine, the Danube, the Weser, and the Elbe. About25 percent of Germany’s waterway network is provided by canals, including the North Sea-Baltic Sea Canal, the Main-Danube Canal, and the Rhine-Oder Canal. These ensure effective connections from North to South and from West to East. The network is also highly comprehensive: nearly all of Germany’s main urban areas are connected to ports and/or inland waterways.
AVIATION - Germany is Europe’s leader in the air cargo sector with airports dealing with approximately 4.3 million tons of air freight in 2013. Frankfurt/Main (FRA) airport, Europe’s largest cargo airport, handled roughly 50 percent of Germany’s air freight. Leipzig/Halle (LEJ) and Cologne/Bonn (CGN) ranked second and third in handling around 20 and 17 percent of Germany’s air freight respectively. Germany has 27 major airports which are located throughout the country in a decentralized manner, allowing for excellent accessibility regardless of where business operations are located.