The data were collected from a global survey of forwarders representatives. The selection of respondents was based on the ControlPay Freight Audit 2018 list of top 50 ocean freight forwarders, including forwarders already present in the LinkedIn network. The sample comprised of experienced persons employed as managers or above in these companies. A two-page questionnaire in English was prepared and distributed via LinkedIn. An automated responder subscription (LinkedIn Helper) was purchased to increase the daily speed of invitations to connect. During a period of April to June 2019 more than 2000 invitations were sent and close to 60% agreed to accept the lead author as their 1st level contact. Out of these, all new contacts were asked to participate. 164 respondents started the survey; 113 full responses for the main questions were recorded. The respondents were asked to rate each of 20 competitiveness factors on a scale of 1 to 10, where the lowest value meant that the factor is least important, and the highest value meant that the factor is most important. Additional questions, aiming at determining the profile of a respondent, were company size and country (shown as continent).