Passengers transported as much as last year, the carriage of goods increased

news release no 29

According to Statistics Estonia, in 2018, Estonian transport enterprises served as many passengers as in 2017, whereas freight volume in tonnes increased by 2%.

The carriage of passengers decreased in road transport, but increased in rail and air transport. The number of passengers carried by Estonian road, rail, sea and air transport enterprises in 2018 amounted to 208.7 million, of whom the majority (72%) were carried by bus. The passenger traffic volume of transport enterprises increased by 5% year-on-year, and reached 6.2 billion passenger-kilometres in 2018.

The number of passengers that used road transport decreased by 1% compared to 2017. There were 190.4 million passengers in total and 86% of them, i.e. approximately 164 million passengers, used urban transport (incl. trams and trolleybuses). The number of passengers in urban transport decreased by 2%. The number of passengers using county lines was 16.7 million (12% more compared to the previous year). The number of passengers was 4 million on domestic highway lines (down by 2%) and close to 1.4 million on international lines (up by 3%). In 2018, the passenger traffic volume of road transport was 2.9 billion passenger-kilometres.

In 2018, Estonian sea transport enterprises carried 9.4 million passengers, which is almost as much as in 2017. The number of passengers carried was 2.5 million in domestic sea traffic (up by 3%) and 6.9 million in international sea traffic (down by 1%). The passenger traffic volume of sea transport enterprises was nearly 1.3 billion passenger-kilometres in 2018. International sea traffic accounted for 98% of the passenger traffic volume.

Last year, 7.8 million passengers were carried by rail, which is 4% more than in 2017. Around 7.7 million passengers were carried in domestic rail traffic (up by 5%) and 107,100 passengers were carried in international rail traffic. The passenger traffic volume of rail transport enterprises was 416.8 million passenger-kilometres.

In 2018, Estonian air transport enterprises carried 1.1 million passengers, which is 11% more than in 2017. 62% of the passengers were carried on regular flights. The passenger traffic volume of air transport enterprises was 1.5 billion passenger-kilometres.

The carriage of goods increased in both road and rail transport. According to preliminary estimates, in 2018, Estonian road freight vehicles and rail, sea and air transport enterprises carried a total of 57.3 million tonnes of goods, of which a half was carried by road and nearly a half by rail.

According to preliminary estimates, Estonian road freight vehicles carried approximately 29.3 million tonnes of goods in 2018 (up by 1%). 23.7 million tonnes of goods were transported in domestic road traffic (up by 3%) and 5.6 million tonnes in international traffic (down by 7%). The estimated freight turnover totalled nearly 6 billion tonne-kilometres in 2018.

In 2018, the volume of goods carried by rail increased by 2%, amounting to 27.8 million tonnes. Nearly two-thirds of the rail freight volume was in domestic rail traffic, reaching 17 million tonnes of goods last year (down by 6%). The volume of goods carried by public railway amounted to 13.5 million tonnes, of which around 80% was in international traffic. Transit goods carried amounted to 9.1 million tonnes (up by 20%). The carriage of imports and exports by rail increased by 3% and 10%, respectively. Compared to 2017, freight turnover in rail transport increased by 12% and amounted to 2.6 billion tonne-kilometres.

Change in number of passengers, 2008‒2018 (2010=100%)

The data of Estonian transport enterprises are collected and published according to the enterprise’s principal activity. The enterprise’s principal activity is determined based on the Estonian Classification of Economic Activities (EMTAK (NACE Rev 2.)): land transport (rail and road), water transport and air transport.

Road transport of passengers includes bus, trolley bus and tram transport. Urban transport includes passenger transport by buses, trams and trolley buses.

Passenger traffic volume is the volume of work done in the transport of passengers. It is measured in passenger-kilometres (pkm). One passenger-kilometre is the transport of one person across a distance of one kilometre.

Freight turnover is the volume of work done in the transport of goods. It is measured in tonne-kilometres (tkm). One tonne-kilometre is the transport of one tonne of goods across a distance of one kilometre.

For the statistical activities on transport, the main representative of public interest is the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications, commissioned by whom Statistics Estonia collects and analyses the data necessary for performing these statistical activities.

For further information:

Meila Kivisild
Enterprise and Agricultural Statistics Department
Statistics Estonia
Tel. +372 625 9203

More detailed data have been published in the Statistical Database (road transport, rail transport, air transport, general data of transport).