Inland navigation is the largest alternative transport mode in Port of Antwerp-Bruges. To further increase the share of inland navigation, Port of Antwerp-Bruges is continuously working on new projects.

Short transit times to the European consumer

Antwerp and Bruges have excellent connections to the extensive European barge network. This ensures short transit times to strategic areas in the European hinterland.


Various barge operators are active in the region, in all the different segments including tankers, containers, dry cargo, breakbulk and ro-ro. The fleet, diverse both in terms of type and size, ensures that there is an inland navigation option available for all cargo transport.

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Projects for more cargo transport via inland navigation

Port of Antwerp-Bruges is investing in a modal shift for transport flows in favour of inland navigation and rail transport. 42% of the total container traffic in Antwerp should be carried by inland navigation by 2030.


Port of Antwerp-Bruges is incentivising this modal shift through efforts to increase the number of inland navigation connections and enhance efficiency in the chain. Improving the infrastructure for inland navigation is also a high priority. 

Port of Antwerp-Bruges focuses on the sustainable modal shift of cargo transport

Autonomous inland navigation vessels

Automated shipping is the future of inland navigation. An unmanned vessel leads to significant cost reductions and provides a solution to growing mobility problems.


For example, Seafar has developed a technology for the remote control of automatic inland navigation vessels. It is already being used on the estuary container ship 'Deseo' which sails semi-autonomously between Zeebrugge and Antwerp. Research by the University of Antwerp and Port of Antwerp-Bruges has shown that 3D sonar sensors, inspired by bats, can help with this technology.

Inland navigation services

There are a range of places available to inland operators or skippers at the port for purchasing drinking water, collecting bilge water, waste disposal, degassification, shore power, etc.


You will find all services for inland skippers such as layby berths and car drop-off points in the port area, available communication channels and contact details of the locks in a handy map. 

Inland navigation application APICS Barge - Antwerp

The APICS Barge application makes your life as a bargemaster or fleet manager easier. Reporting when your ship sails in and out of the Antwerp port area, finding available moorings, and booking locks are done digitally.

What goes on in inland navigation

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New connections and events

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To stand out from the competition on the world market, companies must be able to call on the best possible supply chain to get cargo to its final destination.

Supply Chain Brochure

To stand out from the competition on the world market, companies must be able to call on the best possible supply chain to get cargo to its final destination.

Contact our experts

Marjan Beelen

Mobility Advisor

Johan Abel

Chief Officer Logistics & Sales

Any questions?


Don't hesitate to contact us.

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