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Based on barge fleet, the market is divided into opened, covered and tank barge. The covered segment held major market share in 2022. Covered barges are gaining prominence in the market due to their ability to provide essential cargo protection. By shielding goods from adverse weather conditions such as rain & wind, these barges ensure the safe transit of sensitive and perishable items.
Additionally, covered barges exhibit versatility by accommodating a diverse range of cargo including bulk commodities, agricultural products, and specialized goods. Their adaptability caters to various industry needs, making them a preferred choice for businesses seeking reliable transportation solutions while safeguarding their valuable & delicate products from environmental factors.
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Based on product, the dry cargo segment accounted for 40% of the barge transportation market share in 2022. The advancements in dry cargo inland waterway vessels are significantly propelling the dry cargo segment growth. These technologically sophisticated vessels offer enhanced efficiency, reduced emissions, and increased capacity, making them an attractive choice for transporting goods.
For instance, in May 2023, Archer-Daniels-Midland (ADM) signed a groundbreaking charter deal with HGK Dry Shipping, Germany, involving an exceptionally low-emission ship that operates in European waters, primarily along the Rhine River. According to the shipowner, this new dry cargo inland waterway vessel is purported to slash CO2 emissions by approximately 30%. Additionally, the solar panels affixed to the hatchways produce up to 90 MWh of electricity, further reducing CO2 emissions by an additional 70 tons annually.
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Asia Pacific barge transportation market size dominated around USD 26.9 billion in 2022, propelled by the robust economic growth in several countries within the region. Rapid industrialization and expanding trade activities create a heightened demand for efficient cargo transportation systems. Barges serve as a pivotal product, especially for bulk goods, offering a cost-effective & reliable solution. With burgeoning economies including China and India, there is a continuous need for transporting raw materials and finished products, further driving market value. Additionally, economic progress is also fueling infrastructural developments, leading to the expansion of waterway networks and facilitating the seamless movement of goods, thereby fostering the market growth.