Barge Transportation Market Size By Product (Dry Cargo, Liquid Cargo, Gaseous Cargo), By Barge Fleet (Open, Covered, Tank), By Application (Coal & Crude Petroleum, Agricultural Products, Coke & Refined Petroleum Products, Metal Ores, Secondary Raw Materials & Wastes, Food Products, Beverages & Tobacco, Basic Metals & Fabricated Metal Products, Chemicals, Rubber & Plastic, Nuclear Fuel) Industry Analysis Report, Regional Outlook, Application Potential, Price Trends, Competitive Market Share & Forecast, 2018 – 2024

Published Date: Sep 2018  |  Report ID: GMI1945  |  Authors: Ankita Bhutani

Report Format: PDF   |   Pages: 300   |   Base Year: 2017

Summary Table of Contents Industry Coverage Methodology

Industry Trends

Barge Transportation Market size was valued at over USD 121 billion in 2017 and is estimated to exhibit 5% CAGR from 2018 to 2024.

U.S. Barge Transportation Market, By Product, 2013-2024, (USD Million)

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Growing intermodal transportation services in various industries across the globe is driving the barge transportation market size. The enhanced customer service solutions along with greater regional accessibility will provide significant growth prospects over the projected time frame. Increasing user friendly software solutions coupled with enhanced safety of the barges will further contribute to increased adoption rates.

The advantages offered by the barge ships including optimum fuel usage, emissions, better loading capacity in comparison with railcars and trucks will escalate the industry demand over the forecast timeframe. Increasing petrochemical and crude oil shipments demand along with the modernisation of existing barge boats will further escalate the barge transportation market share.

The vast network of the barges for transporting goods across countries makes this system ideal for transporting bulk products. The barge transportation is preferred by the agricultural industry from transporting goods for export to various international markets owing to their low cost. For instance, the Mississippi river and the Illinois are the major waterways in the U.S., enabling the transportation of farm and agricultural products through barges.

The introduction of several innovative features including navigational aids, GPRS facilities, and GPS location tracking will play a key role in enabling efficient and fast travel of the barges making them ideal for major companies involved in export and import of goods. The increasing adoption of safety equipment in the barges such as the double hulls, and integrated inner and outer hulls results in lesser spills and lower the probability of accidents, thereby providing a positive outlook for the barge transportation industry.

High cost associated with the construction and maintenance of barge fleet are considered as a major limiting factor for the barge transportation service providers. The climatic conditions, international waterways regulations, and increased delivery timelines may hamper the barge transportation market demand. However, high returns on investment from these vessels will attract investments from service provides positively influencing the industry growth.

Barge Transportation Market Report Coverage
Report Coverage Details
Base Year: 2017
Historical Data for: 2013 to 2017 Forecast Period: 2018 to 2024
Pages: 300 Tables, Charts & Figures: 378
Geographies covered (13): U.S., Canada, Germany, UK, France, France, Belgium, Netherlands, China, India, Japan, Brazil, Mexico
Segments covered: Product, Barge Fleet, Application and Region
Companies covered (23): ABC India Ltd., American Commercial Barge Liner (ACBL), Alter Logistics, Continental Corporation, American Commercial Lines LLC, Argosy International Inc., ATS, Inc., Blessey Marine Services, Inc, Bouchard Transportation Co. Inc., Campbell Transportation Company, Inc., Canal Barge, Contargo Waterway Logistics BV, Crounse Corporation, Heartland Barge, Ingram Marine Group, Kirby Corporation, Marquette Transportation Company LLC, McAllister Towing & Transportation Co. Ltd., Neska Container Line, Olson Marine Inc., PACC Offshore Services Holdings Ltd. (POSH), Poh Tiong Choon Logistics Limited, SEACOR Holdings, Inc

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Barge Transportation Market, By Product

Dry cargo accounted for over 45% volume share in 2017 and will continue its dominance owing to increased shipments of agricultural products, coal, and metal ores. Increasing fleet size coupled with efficient mode of transportation will further strengthens its dominance. Moreover, the increasing requirement for transporting municipal wastes and recyclable materials including glass, metal scraps, and paper will further proliferate the barge transportation business growth over the study timeframe.

Liquid cargo will showcase a significant growth rate over the forecast timeframe owing to the rising petrochemical shipments across the globe. Increasing off-shore exploration activities along with the increasing demand for agricultural fertilizers, crude oil, and liquid chemicals will support the segment growth. The shale oil exploration in North America along with the increasing exports specially to India will further proliferate the barge transportation services demand.

Barge Transportation Market, By Application

The coal and crude petroleum segment accounted for over 2,000 shipment-million tonnes in 2017 and is projected to cross over 2,600 shipment-million tonnes by 2024. Exports of coal from major countries including Canada, Russia, and the U.S. will support the segment dominance. The advanced exploration techniques including directional drilling and hydraulic fracturing results in the increase of oil production thereby driving the barge transportation business share over the forecast timeframe.

The coke and refined petroleum products segment will showcase a significant growth rate of over 3.5% over the forecast timeframe. This can be credited to the increasing petroleum production in the U.S., China, and India. Further, rising crude oil prices are positively influencing the profitability of the Oil Marketing Companies supporting the segment growth. The OMCs prefer barge transportation owing to their cost benefit and lowering the overall midstream and downstream expenses.

Barge Transportation Market, By Barge Fleet

The open barge fleet was valued at over USD 44 billion in 2017 and is projected to cross USD 56 billion over the forecast timeframe. The increasing transportation of non-perishable and heavy commodities including coal and iron ore will support the segment dominance. The cost effectiveness of these flatboats compared to the counterparts will further accelerate the barge transportation revenue generation over the next six years.

The barge transportation market size from covered barge fleet will witness 3.1% CAGR over the forecast timeframe. This can be attributed to the increased usage of covered barge narrowboats due to uncertain weather conditions. The larger load carrying capacities along with enhanced safety for the goods as compared to the open barges will further strengthen the segment share.

Barge Transportation Market, By Region

Asia Pacific accounted for the highest revenue share of over USD 34 billion in 2017 owing to the increasing foreign exchange and trade activities related to chemical, and non-renewable materials. Increasing oil imports from North America and Middle East further strengthens the regional dominance. The availability of vast waterways channel along with continuously rising vessel freight traffic along the coastal areas are driving the barge transportation market share over the projected timeframe.

North American barge transportation market size will grow significantly with 4% CAGR over the projected timeframe. Increasing oil export activities from North Dakota and Saskatchewan to other states along with the increasing shale oil production fuels the regional growth. Further, the adoption of navigable inland waterways in Canada for carrying bulk freight coupled with the insufficient capacity of the existing pipelines will provide a positive outlook for the barge transportation market share.

Competitive Market Share

Kirby Corporation, SEACOR Holding, American Commercial Barge Line (ACBL), and Ingram Marine Group are among the prominent players in the barge transportation market. Other notable players include Campbell Transportation, Heartland Barge, Canal Barge, ABC India Ltd., PACC Offshore Services Holdings (POSH), and PTC Logistics. Industry participants are actively involved in mergers and acquisitions for increasing their market share. For instance, in 2016, Kirby Corporation completed the acquisition of SEACOR Holdings for USD 88 million. This acquisition was aimed at enhancing their fleet with a diversified portfolio of 27 inland barges and 13 towboats, thereby offering customers with multiple alternatives.

Participants are also investing heavily on modernization of the existing barge transportation fleet and increasing the number of new barges in their portfolio. For instance, in 2014, Kirby Corporation announced the building of 66 new inland barges with an investment amounting to USD 135 million. In 2016, the company also announced an investment of USD 231 million for expanding its business along the U.S. Gulf Coast.

Industry Background  

The barge transportation market share will witness significant growth owing to the rising demand from diversified applications including, crude oil, petrochemical, and gaseous products. The introduction of several innovative features including the GPRS navigation, LNG powered barges, solar monitoring systems increases the safety and reduces the fuel consumption of these barges significantly, further supporting the increased adoption for such services. However, diversified climatic conditions, high cost of acquiring and maintaining these fleets along with stringent government regulations may hamper the barge transportation growth over the study timeframe.

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