Displaying items by tag: Brexit
In north Wales, town councillors in Holyhead, have urged the government to think again about letting Britain crash out of Europe with no deal.
Fearing the impact of a clean break from the European Union, NorthWalesLive writes, that members of Holyhead Town Council have passed a motion urging the Prime Minister to act in the interests of such ports and secure a deal with Brussels.
The Port of Holyhead is the second largest (ferry)port in the UK (after Dover), handling two million passengers, half a million vehicles and 450,000 freight units a year with the Swedish company employing hundreds of workers in North Wales.
During a recent visit to the port Michael Gove, the minister in charge of Government preparation for no-deal, said that ports are “geared up” for Brexit and should avoid any significant delays and congestion.
But Stena Line, which is the town’s largest employer, has described leaving with no-deal and no trade agreement as “the worst of all possible scenarios.”
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“We have to plan for the worst now at this stage,” said Port of Cork chief executive Brendan Keating.
Already, a large number of HGVs from the North use ferry connections from Cork to get to Brittany in France and Santander in Spain. If a hard Brexit occurs, it is likely that increased HGV traffic will use the routes out of Cork.
The Port of Cork is investing €85m in developing expanded cargo-handling facilities at its deepwater terminal Ringaskiddy. It has successfully applied to Bord Pleanála to increase the size of a previously permitted customs’ inspection building at Ringaskiddy from 324sq m to 648sq m, primarily in light of the uncertainty over Brexit.
“We have to have the capability to put the necessary checks in place,” Mr Keating said, adding that, if a hard Brexit occurs, there is likely to be more demand for freight and cargo to transit via Dublin and Rosslare ports as well.
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The WexfordPeople writes, following his visit to Wexford to officially open the M11 Gorey to Enniscorthy bypass, pictures were circulated of a smiling Taoiseach Leo Varadkar meeting with representatives at Rosslare Europort.
Having shed his tie after a long day, there were smiles nonetheless as he was shown around the Port which he's publicly stated as being key to post-Brexit Ireland.
However, decades of neglect means getting things up to code is a mammoth task, particularly with a Brexit deadline of October looming large. With a €320million expansion plan being outlined for Dublin Port, critics have accused the government of merely paying lip-service to Rosslare and are not holding out too much hope that it will get the shot in the arm it needs.
General Manager at the port Glenn Carr, however, remains firm that Brexit should represent an opportunity for Rosslare.
More on the story can be read through this link.
The port authority in Holyhead, Stena Line says free port status for the town could bring "immediate opportunities" but also had a message for UK Government.
The ferry giant according to NorthWalesLive, was commenting after Boris Johnson's Government unveiled plans for 10 free ports across the UK after Brexit.
They allow firms to import goods and then re-export them outside of normal tax and customs rules.
While Stena said free port status could bring benefits, their message to the UK Government was that reaching a deal with the EU remains the "best possible solution".
Ian Hampton, Stena Line Brexit spokesperson, said: "Holyhead is the second largest roro port in the UK and the largest port facility owned by the Stena Line Group, so naturally the Company is currently seeking further clarification from the UK Government on all the proposals that are being issued to help ensure the prosperity of the UK in a post-Brexit era.
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Almost €8 million, The Irish Times reports, has been spent by the State buying land and developing properties at Dublin Port, Dublin airport and Rosslare Europort for border checks post-Brexit.
Paschal Donohoe the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform said the Office of Public Works (OPW) has spent €7.8 million to date on acquiring and developing physical infrastructure for use at the two ports and the airport.
The Minister revealed the spending on infrastructure for a no-deal Brexit in response to a parliamentary question tabled by Fianna Fáil’s finance spokesman Michael McGrath.
The State has taken control of a 13,000sq m warehouse at Dublin Port previously owned by businessman Harry Crosbie, and purchased 16 acres outside Rosslare port that was owned by car dealer Bill Cullen.
Both men lost control of the properties in the financial crash. Mr Donohoe did not provide a breakdown of the State’s spending on the individual properties.
The State fast-tracked the takeover of the former Crosbie warehouse and the Rosslare property for inspections of goods and containers should the UK leave the EU without a deal on March 31st. The Brexit date has since been extended until October 31st.
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As the Irish Examiner writes the Port of Cork is poised to set up a special "border control" facility to help ease congestion at Dublin and Rosslare should Britain crash out of the EU.
A British-Irish Chamber of Commerce meeting in Cork heard from the port's chief executive Brendan Keating, who said it was stepping up its plans to handle more traffic. "We are seeking to develop what is called a border control point. Dublin has built one and is prepared for a worst-case scenario hard Brexit. Rosslare is ready. We are about to start preparation on one to facilitate inspections of products coming to and from the country.
"We are doing it because the Government is somewhat concerned that with congestion in Dublin and Rosslare, other ports will have to kick in and facilitate trade movement. We are next and we will prepare. We will be ready in time," Mr Keating said.
The Port of Cork was somewhat insulated from a hard Brexit because its business is less dependant on daily trade across the Irish Sea. As a "lift-on, lift-off" port, it hoped to grow its market share from 20% to 25% once the multimillion redevelopment of Ringaskiddy is completed, Mr Keating said.
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#ferries - The Port of Holyhead has shown “no sense of emergency” about Brexit, while Dublin Port bemoaned the huge expense preparing for a no-deal exit that might not happen, the British-Irish Parliamentary Assembly heard.
As The Irish Times writes at the biannual gathering of Irish and UK parliamentarians heard details of a report from one of its committees on a visit to the two Irish Sea ports by a delegation from the assembly to assess preparations for Brexit.
The committee painted a contrasting picture on preparations being taken in Dublin and Holyhead.
Darren Millar, a Conservative member of the Welsh national assembly, said that Dublin Port officials expressed concern about the number of customs officials that still needed to be hired to deal with a potential no-deal Brexit.
“Our biggest concern was that there was huge effort and huge expense going into these things and they may not be required,” he said on Tuesday, the second day of the assembly at Druids Glen in Co Wicklow.
Further reading on this story can be read through this link.
#ferries - At the end of last year Irish Continental Group (ICG) announced its decision not to run its Irish Ferries services this summer to France from Rosslare, Co Wexford, the move was met with both surprise and shock in the south-east port.
After all, the Irish Independent writes, the company's new 'cruise ferry', the WB Yeats, which can carry more than 1,800 passengers and 1,200 vehicles, had just arrived in Ireland after a delay and there were great expectations that ICG would put the ship on its Rosslare to Cherbourg, France route.
Instead, ICG decided to operate the ferry service from Dublin Port to Cherbourg, lured by the scope for additional business in the capital.
Irish Ferries is still operating its Rosslare-to-Pembroke service while Stena runs from the south eastern port to Fishguard as well as to Cherbourg.
But if many were stunned by the move, for some in the Rosslare business community it was a progression for Irish Ferries that should have been anticipated.
According to Damien Roche, managing director of Rosslare-based Roche Logistics Group, which he co-owns with his brother Conor, it was simply a numbers game for ICG.
To read much more on the ferryport click here.
Afloat.ie adds Irish Ferries decision last year to abandon Rosslare also involved a second route to France, Roscoff in Brittany which was only operated in the peak-season summer months. This leaves Brittany Ferries as the sole operator maintaining an Ireland-Brittany link on the Cork-Roscoff route which is experiencing a passenger boost.
#dublinport - Dublin Port's CEO has defended the company’s proposal to limit cruise ship traffic because of capacity issues.
Eamonn O’Reilly told RTÉ radio’s Morning Ireland that the plan is to reduce the number of cruise ships allowed into Dublin from 160 this year to 80 in 2021 because of the need for increased capacity for container traffic when the UK leaves the EU.
It is necessary to ration available capacity, he explained given the competition for berth spaces.
Mr O’Reilly said Dublin Port company had a long discussion with the Minister for Transport Shane Ross this week during which they discussed Brexit, borrowing and cruise berths.
BreakingNews.ie has more on the port proposal.
In a circular to members, EBA general secretary Stuart Carruthers reiterates advice given at the association’s recent General Assembly in Helsinki, as received from the European Commission.
“In the event of a ‘no deal’ Brexit, boats which are lying in the UK at the time of Brexit will lose their Union status (ie they will lose their right to free circulation in the EU),” he writes.
“On their return to the EU they will be treated as non-Union goods and will be subject to customs controls in the same way as any other vessel coming from a third country would be. This could result in VAT and, if applicable, import duty being payable.”