Container barging has gained in importance in port-related transport along with the need for sustainable transport. Nevertheless, coordination problems between terminal operator and barge operator exist, and performance lags behind. This paper analyses actors that may hinder or stimulate a better future performance of container barging in the port of Rotterdam. A case study is accomplished and guided by a framework rooted in Institutional Economics. Despite favourable conditions set by governments and the port authority, the share of container barging has hardly grown. The container barging sector in Rotterdam is embedded in a history with many alliances, a high degree of organisation, and a good track record in the development of institutional arrangements to solve coordination problems. However, the present contractual relations in the transport chain form an inadequate condition. Fom a theoretical perspective, the paper shows the value of studying port-related transport chains by acknowledging their institutional context.