Increased share of domestic freight in the value of import trade

4.12.2015 9.00 | Published in English on 30.12.2016 at 11.08
Press release

Finnish Customs has studied the share of freight and insurance expenses in import trade. The previous survey on the expenses of the import of goods was carried out in 2008. A new survey was carried out based on the 2014 statistical material.

The share of total freight appears to have decreased in comparison with the survey conducted in 2008, at which time the share of freight was 6.8 per cent. The present share of freight in the statistical value is on average 5.1 per cent. The share of domestic freight rose from the 23.0 per cent indicated by the 2008 survey to 37.5 per cent, and the share of foreign freight fell from just under 77.0 per cent to 62.5 per cent.

Evidently, the drop in the share of freight can be attributed to the decrease in the relative share of imports of cheap bulk goods, such as metals and energy, whereas the share of imports of expensive piece goods has increased in comparison with the period of the previous survey.

Insurance costs have also dropped in comparison with the previous survey. In total, the insurance expenses were now 0.1 per cent, whereas the figure was 0.4 per cent the previous time. The share of domestic insurance costs increased significantly, reaching 45.9 per cent, whereas in 2008 the corresponding figure was 27.6 per cent. The share of foreign insurance costs is therefore only 54.1 per cent. The 2008 share was 72.4 per cent.

Background and purpose of the survey

According to the European Union regulation on Community statistics concerning balance of payments, international trade in services and foreign direct investment (No 184/2005 of January 2005), the import data on the national accounts and balance of payments are to be recorded as FOB values at the level of the national economy instead of CIF, which is applied to foreign trade statistics. According to the recommendation, countries that use CIF type values should collect separate material relating to freight and insurance costs. This should be carried out at a level as detailed as possible. In this way, the FOB value can be established for customers’ needs.

The objective of the survey was to produce a calculation in which the import of goods according to the CIF value is divided into import of goods according to the FOB value, into transport expenses from the border of the export country to the customs border of Finland, and into freight insurance expenses. Transport and insurance expenses ought to be divisible into payments to domestic and foreign companies. In addition, the aim was to find out the distribution of the used terms of delivery.

The project met the set objectives in part. It was possible to calculate the share of freight and insurance costs in the value of the import of goods, as was the share of domestic and foreign costs. The shares could only be calculated at a relatively general level, as there were not enough replies available for obtaining reliable results on combinations of import territories, goods categories and methods of transport.

Sampling, data collection and data processing

The target population for the sampling was obtained from Customs’ statistics on the foreign trade of goods in 2014. The target population was divided into 26 different areas of countries of departure and 13 goods categories based on the Combined Nomenclature (CN).

The final sample comprised 981 companies and 1 616 observations. The data was gathered with questionnaires. It was possible to use the following material based on the replies in the calculation of results: 829 observations where the total quantity of freight was known; 665 observations where both domestic and foreign freight were known; 400 observations where the total insurance costs were known; 295 observations where the domestic and foreign insurance shares were known; 1 255 observations where the terms of delivery were known.

Already in 2008 it became clear that for many companies it was not possible to report the shares of the required freight and insurance expenses. The same problems were encountered also on this occasion. Companies had great difficulties in responding to the questionnaire. Some of the companies did not have any knowledge of the freight and/or insurance expenses or, for example, of the share of a foreign freight or insurance. Many of the companies had an annual insurance, and thus the share of the insurance for a single consignment could not be calculated. Due to the lack of accurate knowledge, expert estimates were also accepted as responses from companies.

As there was not enough data available on all the country groups, product groups and methods of transport, groups had to be combined in the calculation phase. The results were calculated by emphasising the observations with the corresponding shares of target population values.

The following grouping into countries was used in calculating the results:

  • Asia, Oceania
  • Africa
  • Benelux
  • The British Isles
  • South America
  • Europe
  • North America
  • Sweden
  • Germany
  • Russia

The following goods categories were used:

  • 01-24 Foodstuffs etc.
  • 25-27 Mineral products
  • 28-38 Products of chemical industry
  • 39 Plastics
  • 40-43 Rubber, leather
  • 44-49 Forestry products
  • 50-67 Textile products, clothing
  • 68-71 Articles of minerals
  • 72-83 Metals and articles of metals
  • 84-85 Machinery, equipment
  • 86-89 Vehicles
  • 90-97 Instruments, clocks and watches, musical instruments
  • 98-99 Industrial plants, specific deliveries etc.

The following methods of transport were included in the survey:

  • Own propulsion (watercraft etc.)
  • Air transport
  • Road transport
  • Sea transport
  • Postal consignment
  • Rail transport
Table 1. Division of terms of delivery
Delivery term Number Share, %
DAP 292 23,3
EXW 184 14,7
FCA 168 13,4
CIF 144 11,5
FOB 143 11,4
DDP 129 10,3
CIP 73 5,8
CPT 68 5,4
CFR 45 3,6
DAT 8 0,6
FAS 1 0,1
Total 1255 100,0
Table 2. Freight according to territory
Country group Total freight, % Share of domestic freight
in total freight, %
Share of foreign freight
in total freight, %
Asia, Oceania 5,0 29,4 70,6
Africa 5,4 3,5 96,5
Benelux 3,6 67,5 32,5
The British Isles 4,2 23,9 76,1
South America 7,0 27,6 72,4
Europe 5,3 19,8 80,2
North America 10,1 16,3 83,7
Sweden 2,3 43,6 56,4
Germany 3,6 52,1 47,9
Russia 9,3 39,8 60,2
Total 5,1 37,5 62,5
Table 3. Freight according to CN category
CN category Total freight, % Share of domestic freight
in total freight, %
Share of foreign freight
in total freight, %
01-24 5,1 58,7 41,3
25-27 13,3 44,9 55,1
28-38 6,3 12,5 87,5
39 4,1 47,9 52,1
40-43 2,5 5,8 94,2
44-49 7,4 42,1 57,9
50-67 4,6 32,6 67,4
68-71 7,8 16,6 83,4
72-83 3,0 21,7 78,3
84-85 1,5 35,6 64,4
86-89 3,7 43,8 56,2
90-97 2,1 45,8 54,2
98-99 28,9 18,0 82,0
Total 5,1 37,5 62,5
Table 4. Freight according to method of transport
Means of transport Total freight, % Share of domestic freight
in total freight, %
Share of foreign freight
in total freight, %
Sea 5,4 38,8 61,2
Rail 8,9 0,3 99,7
Road 3,3 60,9 39,1
Air 1,7 18,3 81,7
Postal consignment 0,7 0,0 100,0
Own propulsion 1,4 0,0 100,0
Total 5,1 37,5 62,5
Table 5. Insurances according to territory
Country group Total insurance, % Share of domestic insurance
in total insurance, %
Share of foreign insurance
in total insurance, %
Asia, Oceania 0,13 22,5 77,5
Africa 0,05 1,2 98,8
Benelux 0,11 76,8 23,2
The British Isles 0,05 51,9 48,1
South America 0,25 22,2 77,8
Europe 0,13 20,9 79,1
North America 0,11 10,5 89,5
Sweden 0,03 57,6 42,4
Germany 0,32 79,1 20,9
Russia 0,11 49,9 50,1
Total 0,11 45,9 54,1
Table 6. Insurances according to CN category
CN category Total insurance, % Share of domestic insurance
in total insurance, %
Share of foreign insurance
in total insurance, %
01-24 0,15 28,4 71,6
25-27 0,06 73,5 26,5
28-38 0,06 3,3 96,7
39 0,07 36,0 64,0
40-43 0,32 96,9 3,1
44-49 0,19 54,6 45,4
50-67 0,18 49,5 50,5
68-71 0,42 10,4 89,6
72-83 0,09 26,4 73,6
84-85 0,06 34,8 65,2
86-89 0,05 61,3 38,7
90-97 0,11 33,5 66,5
98-99 0,82 0,0 100,0
Yhteensä 0,11 45,9 54,1
Table 7. Insurance by method of transport
Method of transport Total insurance, % Share of domestic insurance
in total insurance, %
Share of foreign insurance
in total insurance, %
Sea 0,11 48,9 51,1
Rail 0,02 0,1 99,9
Road 0,24 60,8 39,2
Air 0,1 18,0 82,0
Own propulsion 0,08 1,4 98,6
Total 0,11 45,9 54,1

1) Links: Official Journal of the European Union L174/1, (EU) No 549/2013 and Official Journal of the European Union L166/22, (EU) No 555/2012

Finnish Customs, Statistics
Further information:
Ms Anne Oikarinen, Senior Customs Officer, tel. +358 40 332 1863
Mr Anssi Kaarna,  Senior Customs Officer, tel. +358 4 332 8153
E-mail: forename.surname[at]tulli.fi
Statistics bulletin