Government invests £35m to protect critical freight routes

Vital freight routes into, out of, and around the UK will continue to run smoothly, thanks to a multi-million-pound Government scheme to help ensure critical goods, such as food and medical supplies, can move freely.

The Department of Transport announced that the Government has signed agreements with six operators to provide an estimated £35 million to ensure there is enough freight capacity to prevent disruption to the flow of goods.

The decision has been made to protect 16 of the most important routes – covering the Channel, the Short Strait, the North Sea, and routes between Great Britain and Northern Ireland – which were previously at risk of closure due to a drop in demand as a result of COVID-19. They will now be designated as Public Service Obligation routes for a period of up to nine weeks.

The Department for Transport says it is working closely with the transport sector and devolved administrations to monitor the situation on all freight routes (not just those in the scheme) in order to ensure critical goods can move freely.

The agreements follow the UK, French and Irish governments’ pledge to work together on temporary measures to ensure COVID-19 does not threaten vital freight routes between the countries.

The routes currently eligible for support are:

Portsmouth-Santander
Portsmouth-Cherbourg
Poole-Bilbao
Dover-Dunkerque
Dover-Calais
Folkestone-Coquelles
Cairnryan-Larne
Tilbury-Zeebrugge
Teesport-Europoort
Hull-Europoort
Hull-Zeebrugge
Heysham-Warrenpoint
Rotterdam-Killingholme
Cairnryan-Belfast
Harwich-Rotterdam
Harwich-Hoek van Holland

Operators who will receive funding are:

Brittany Ferries
DFDS
Eurotunnel
P&O
Seatruck
Stena

Actual amounts paid will depend on the actual amount of capacity required and sold in each week.

Routes between GB and Northern Ireland will receive an estimated £5.5 million. The Northern Ireland Executive will contribute 40% of the funding on these routes.

Spotlight Job

Project manager (marine civils/construction engineer)

DOE, Hamble (near Southampton)

A confident, friendly, suitably experienced project engineer is needed join a growing team. You must have a minimum of 3-5 years post graduate, practical site experience in construction, ideally from a civil engineering background.

Full job description »

Comments are closed.