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Maritime Connectivity in the context of Brexit

ACT now and prepare to switch

The Minister for Transport on 19 October announced the start of a further communication campaign to encourage the logistics and maritime transport sector to ACT now and get Brexit ready.

On 31st December 2020, the Brexit transition period comes to an end, the UK having formally left the EU earlier this year. While negotiations on a Trade Agreement between the EU and UK are ongoing, businesses in all sectors have been preparing contingency plans for a range of possible outcomes.

With less than three months left, it is time for industry to ACT (Assess, Communicate, Trial) and to prepare to Switch to direct routes to the Continent. It is inevitable that there will be delays in UK ports.

This communication campaign by the Irish Maritime Development Office in conjunction with the Departments of Transport, Foreign Affairs and Trade, Business Enterprise and Innovation and Agriculture, Food and the Marine serves to reinforce the message that there is maritime capacity available to transport goods directly to Continental Europe, these options are many and varied across different modalities (ro-ro, con-ro, lo-lo) providing both accompanied and unaccompanied options to exporters.

Welcoming details of the new communication campaign, the Minister for Transport Eamon Ryan T.D. said:

“While it is likely that Brexit will result in delays and disruption to the operation of the UK landbridge, there is sufficient maritime capacity available to transport displaced traffic on direct routes to the continent. I would urge all affected businesses to review their contingency plans, assess their transport options and act now.”

Minister for State Hildegarde Naughton added:

“There are reliable services and available capacity on direct routes to the continent for businesses which currently use the landbridge to transport goods. I would encourage these businesses to investigate the options available to them, to communicate their needs to the shipping industry and to trial alternative routes in advance of the 31st of December deadline.

Businesses are being asked to consider moving to direct routes for the movement of goods to the Continent, to avoid potential delays and new procedures involved in transiting through the UK. Shipping companies should also continue to assess future demand requirements and be ready to respond.

It is important that exporters continue to communicate with shipping companies to ensure that planned capacity over the coming months is scheduled to meet demand. Direct services to the Continent represent reliable alternatives in the case of disruption on the UK landbridge. Shipping companies have demonstrated that they will respond to exporters needs given the existing and new capacity that has become available on direct routes to the Continent."

ENDS

Initial Publication Date: 
Monday, 19 October, 2020