Study: The Economics Of Dutch Inland Ports
A first comprehensive study was performed in 2004, the so-called Blue Ports report. This research was initiated due to a lack of understanding and insights of the economic importance of Dutch inland ports. Results of this report were astonishing; it concludes that the inland ports together are not economically inferior to the seaports. The direct value added as well as the indirect added value are slightly lower compared to the seaports, whereas the direct employment is even higher in the inland ports (66.400 to 58.000). These figures indicate the size of the economic value of inland ports for the Netherlands, especially for the regional development. Therefore, this initiated a shift in the focus of the central government regarding the inland ports, they were more supported since then.
In 2014, the economic importance of Dutch inland ports has been further investigated. With the strong development of transport systems, inland ports become increasingly more important as nodes. In this study, a detailed analysis is provided of the Blue Ports method, which examines how inland ports contribute in terms of economic impact to the national economy. The study discusses various economic effects occurring in inland ports. Specific attention has been given to determine the most optimal method for monitoring these effects, considering the former economic impact studies (Blue Ports reports). The aim of the research is to propose such a method, which can be used to update the economic effects biannually. Here, also a case study has been applied, which contributed to the development of an inland port monitor. It turns out that there is still a wide gap between theory and the applicability of these theories in practice. However, a solid method is presented to monitor the economic impact of Dutch inland ports.