In the 1st quarter 2020, the movement of passengers at national airports totalled 9.5 million, representing a decrease of 15.4% (+6.3% in the 4thQ 2019). The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the restrictive measures adopted in airspace were significant in March, with marked reductions in the movement of passengers at the main national airports, which ranged between -55.8% (Porto airport) and -49.1% (Funchal airport). This impact was more notable from the beginning of the second half of March, with reductions above 90% in the last days.
Transport in light railway systems decreased by 5.6% (+13.8% in the 4thQ 2019) with 58.8 million transported passengers, as a result of the sharp reduction in the number of passengers in March (-45.0%), reflecting the almost paralysation of passenger transport in public transport since the middle of March due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Inland waterways passenger transport decreased by 12.1%, after +6.2% in the 4thQ 2019, reaching 4.3 million passengers transported.
Air freight transport was the only mode that kept the upward trend, despite the slowdown (+4.2%, +16.2% in the 4thQ 2019). Maritime, rail and road freight transport registered decreases: -2.7% in national maritime ports (-2.9% in the 4thQ 2019), -7.3% by rail (-12.3% in the previous quarter) and -2.8% by road (+0.6% in the 4thQ 2019).
Despite the circumstances determined by the COVID-19 pandemic, Statistics Portugal will try to maintain the statistical production and release calendar, although some adjustments might occur associated with the impact of the pandemic in obtaining primary information. For this reason, Statistics Portugal asks for the best collaboration by firms, households and public entities in answering to Statistics Portugal’s requests to obtain information, using Internet and telephone as alternative channels to face-to-face contacts. The quality of official statistics, particularly its ability to identify the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, depends crucially on this collaboration that Statistics Portugal is grateful for in advance.