Direct Ireland-France ferry announced amid forecasts of Brexit delays

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By Digital Desk Staff

A new ferry route direct from Ireland to France has been announced, which will remove the need for lorries to travel through Britain.

Operator EuRoRo will run services between Rosslare and Dunkirk from January 1st 2021.

The route comes amid fears of long delays in England for customs checks after the Brexit transition period ends next month.

A report by the Government has shown there is enough capacity on ferry routes to accommodate the 150,000 lorries a year which use the UK as a landbridge between mainland Europe and Ireland.

The Government has welcomed the announcement, with Minister for Transport Eamon Ryan urging businesses to take advantage of new routes as a “real alternative to avoid the inevitable delays that will be experienced on the UK landbridge” in light of Brexit.

“Together with the increased sailing frequencies to Cherbourg announced by both Irish Ferries and Stena Line and the new direct routes launched by CLDN, the shipping sector has once again shown its resilience and its willingness to respond to changes in the market," he said.

Rosslare

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Rosslare Europort General Manager Glenn Carr also welcomed the announcement of the six-times weekly service.

“The frequency we will now offer from Rosslare Europort will ensure a wide range of options to bypass the landbridge through Britain,” he said.

He added the new service will also be “very attractive” for inbound and outbound tourism when Covid-19 travel restrictions are eased.

The port authority for Rosslare, Iarnród Éireann, has recently secured planning permission for a “major transformation” of the port which will include a new configuration along with new facilities and infrastructure.

Delays

It comes as the Government has called on businesses, freight logistic companies and hauliers to review their contingency preparations for the end of the Brexit transition period on December 31st.

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It has urged businesses who have not yet considered how they will get their goods to European markets from January 1st to do so.

It recommended they consider switching to direct shipping services to mainland Europe.

The Taoiseach and Ministers have stressed this week that regardless of a deal being agreed between the EU and UK, new arrangements from the end of the transition period will inevitably create delays.

This is because those using the landbridge will be required to engage with customs, health and agriculture authorities in Ireland, the UK and across the EU for all goods transiting through Britain.

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