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Concepts and definitions

Dry cargo ship

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

Passenger ship

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

Passenger transport performance

Total number of kilometres covered by passengers during a specific unit of time, usually one year. Unit passenger-kilometre.


A passenger-kilometre is a measurement unit describing the passenger carrying performance of some means of transport such as a passenger car, coach, train, boat, aircraft or any transport vehicle suited for the transporting of passengers. Two persons travelling five kilometres on board a vehicle generate ten passenger-kilometres. Transport kilometres multiplied by average number of passengers.

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.


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


Tonne-kilometre describes the volume of transport, and is obtained as a product of transported volume of goods (tonnes) and length of transport journey (kilometres).


Transport of one tonne of goods over a distance of one kilometre.

Referencing instructions:

Official Statistics of Finland (OSF): Domestic Waterborne Traffic [e-publication].
ISSN=2670-1979. Helsinki: Statistics Finland [referred: 23.4.2024].
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