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Concepts and definitions


A barge type vessel regardless of size, excluding pusher lighter combinations, which are included in the regular merchant fleet.

Dry cargo ship

Ro-ro cargo ships, bulk carriers, container ships and other dry cargo ships included in the merchant fleet.

Other engineless vessel

A vessel moving without its own power regardless of size, excluding barges.

Other vessel

Other vessels than passenger ships, dry cargo ships and tankers, for example, tugboats, icebreakers, pusher lighters, fishing vessels and administrative vessels included in the merchant fleet.

Passenger ship

Passenger ships and ro-ro passenger ships included in the merchant fleet.

Register of Merchant Vessels

Such vessels in the Finnish register of ships, which can be granted subsidies from State funds to improve competitiveness, are entered in the Register of Merchant Vessels upon application.

Registered merchant fleet

All vessels registered in the Finnish register of ships regardless of the vesselís size or type.

Regular merchant fleet

Vessels that must be registered, that is, vessels with a length of 15 m or more. However, barges and other engineless vessels are not included in the regular merchant fleet. The regular merchant fleet is divided into four main categories by vessel type: passenger ships, dry cargo ships, tankers and other vessels.

Ro-ro ship

Vessels where cargo is loaded and unloaded by moving it on wheels onto and off the ship on ramps in the stern and bow or through side doors (roll on/roll off). If a ro-ro ship can carry at least 120 passengers in addition to cargo, it is classified as a ro-ro passenger ship.

Small vessel

A vessel under 15 m, but at least 10 m, which has been voluntarily entered in the register of ships.


Oil, gas and chemical tankers included in the merchant fleet.

Vesselís deadweight (dwt)

The combined weight of the vesselís cargo, fuel, water supplies, stores and people according to the Plimsoll line, i.e. the vesselís carrying power.

Vesselís gross tonnage (gross)

Comparison figure based on the total volume of closed-in spaces of a vessel.

Vesselís net tonnage (net)

Measurement of a vesselís available capacity.

Referencing instructions:

Official Statistics of Finland (OSF): Merchant Fleet [e-publication].
ISSN=2670-1669. Helsinki: Statistics Finland [referred: 26.2.2024].
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