Short sea shipping as intermodal competitor: a theoretical analysis of European transport policies

Despite the European Union (EU) efforts promoting policies that encourage short sea shipping (SSS) based on its advantages in terms of intermodality and environment, this mode has not yet reached a significant market share compared to land transport. In this paper, the authors establish a thesis that suggests that funding programs (such as Marco Polo I and II) have not properly offered the right incentives to promote SSS, and aspects such as the key role of port infrastructure and its characteristics, have not been taken into consideration. In a departure from traditional transport cost models, to prove their thesis, the authors use a theoretical intermodal competition model to compare alternative modes—road transport vs. SSS. They reach the conclusion that the EU needs to focus on ports and transport system efficiency as a whole in order to compete effectively in the freight transport market.


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  • Accession Number: 01563835
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: May 9 2015 2:59PM