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During the early hours of this morning Fred Olsen's Cruise Lines 28,388 tonnes Boudicca docked in Dublin Port, marking the inaugural cruise-call for this year's season, writes Jehan Ashmore.
The 880 passenger berth cruiseship with a crew of over 300 had arrived overnight from the Isles of Scilly as part of her cruise itinerary which started from Southampton.

Onboard the ship which caters mostly for the UK market, asides the interior facilities there are the outdoor leisure amenities located on the Lounge Deck which has two jacuzzis and an exercise pool. There is also a large swimming pool and weather permitting a poolside buffet is also available at meal times. In addition a circular pool is located on the Marque Deck.

She alongside sister Black Watch belong to a four-ship fleet of the Norwegian owned company. Boudicca was built in 1973 and for many years served as Royal Viking Star as part of a trio of German built sisters for Royal Viking Line. The 205m long vessel underwent her last major refit in 2006.

Boudicca will remain berthed in Dublin's Alexandra Basin until she sets sail later this afternoon for the short overnight cruise-leg to Liverpool.

Last year Dublin Port handled 88 cruisecalls and this number of cruise-callers is to be closely repeated in 2011. Overall there will be over 200 cruise calls with around half a million passengers and crew scheduled to visit ports and anchorage locations throughout the island of Ireland. The cruise sector business is estimated to generate €60m to both the northern and southern economies.

Published in Cruise Liners
A former Irish Sea freight ferry which was originally named with an equine-theme, returned to the Dublin-Liverpool port route yesterday and coincides with this Saturday's Aintree Grand National, writes Jehan Ashmore.
The entry of the chartered Norman Trader onto P&O (Irish Sea's) Dublin-Liverpool route retraces her career as the 1998 built ro-pax vessel Dawn Merchant which was used on the same route to start a rival service in 1999. She was soon joined by sistership Brave Merchant to operate the route run by Merchant Ferries which named the vessels after the well known racing thoroughbreds 'Dawn Run' and 'Dancing Brave'.

Dawn Merchant and Brave Merchant represented the first pair of the 'Racehorse' class quartet of ro-pax sisters commissioned for the Cenargo Group. The quartet were built by Spainish shipbuilders Astilleros Espanoles SA in Seville, noting the first pair at 22,046grt where slightly smaller in tonnage terms compared to their 22,215grt counterparts Midnight Merchant and Northern Merchant. Upon delivery in 2000 the second pair were chartered to Norfolkline's Dover-Dunkerque route.

With a 130 truck capacity the Norman Trader can handle a marginally higher number of freight vehicles compared to the Norcape which handled 127 trucks. The Norcape, a 32-year-old freight-only vessel,was stood down in February and remains laid-up at Liverpool's Huskisson Dock. Incidentally, Norman Trader has joined one of her Racehorse class sisters, European Endeavour (formerly Midnight Merchant) which had directly replaced the Norcape on the central corridor route.

Likewise the European Endeavour is no stranger to the Irish route as for the last two years she has acted as winter relief vessel to cover the refits of the routes Dutch built ro-pax sisters Norbay and Norbank. The latter vessel is now undergoing a refit by Cammell Laird Shiprepairers in Birkenhead, now that the Norman Trader is in service to maintain the three-ship operated 8-hour route.

The Norman Trader had arrived into Dublin Bay last Friday from London's Tilbury Docks, on the next day she entered Dublin Port. In recent years she has operated on English Channel routes for the French shipping giant Louis-Dreyfus Armateurs through their ferry division LD Lines.

Norman Trader's (Dawn Merchant) sister Brave Merchant now renamed Norman Bridge also runs for LD Lines 'Motorways of the Seas' (MOS) route across the Bay of Biscay between Nantes /St. Nazaire to Gijón in northern Spain. The 14-hour route which started last year, which was run iniatially as a joint venture between Grimaldi Lines and Louis-Dreyfus and traded as GLD Atlantique.

Published in Ferry

There's a real sailing buzz around Tall Ships these days, even though Ireland does not currently have one to sail. There's less than 100 days to the Tall Ships visit to Waterford, last weekend saw a ground breaking Tall Ships Conference, a sailing School has offered a Sloop as a temporary replacement and this morning the Irish Sailing Association has announced 1000 Euro bursaries to get young people involved in Tall Ship sailing.

Last weekend's workshop in Dublin Port was a great success with Tall Ship Chairmen from Dublin, Belfast, Cork and Galway all in attendance. Now the ISA is going on further with the immediate announcement of the launch of Sail Training Ireland, again in Dublin Port in two weeks time.

Following the sinking of the Asgard II and the decision to wind up Coiste An Asgard, the ISA (Irish Sailing Association) has facilitated a steering group with the establishment of 'Sail Training Ireland', an umbrella organisation developing a national sail training programme in Ireland. Sail Training Ireland, now incorporated as a limited company, is to be launched on Thursday the 14th of April 2011 in Dublin Port offices at 12:30pm. All those with an interest in Sail Training activities are very welcome to attend.

Sail Training International has awarded a bursary to Sail Training Ireland which will provide funding to support the participation of young people in The Tall Ships Races 2011 and 2012. Sheila Tyrrell, Chair of the steering group, who has a long history with sail training and in particular the Asgard remarked "We are delighted that we are in a position to formally launch the association, we are now taking applications for bursaries to allow young people to participate in the Tall Ships Race visiting Waterford later this year, and are also recruiting a manager to help manage the affairs of the association."

The aims and objectives of Sail Training Ireland are to promote the development and education of young men and women through the Sail Training experience regardless of nationality, culture, religion, gender or social background as well as to sponsor and support sea-going trainees. Sail Training Ireland will also engage with Sail Training International to establish a recurring Sail Training Ireland endorsed Tall Ships Maritime Festival every three to five years.

There will be a number of bursaries of up to a maximum of €1,000 available, towards the cost of the voyage. Each bursary shall not be more than 50% of the total cost of participation i.e. cost of the berth plus any travel expenses. Applicants should apply in writing using the application form published on www.irishsailtraining.com . Applications must be received by 30 April 2011.

Sail Training Ireland is also seeking to appoint a part-time manager to help with the development of a business plan and the day to day running of the organisations affairs. Further information on the position and a full job description can be found on the STI website www.irishsailtraining.com. Closing date for applications is Friday 22nd April, just three weeks away.

The launch, sponsored by Arklow Shipping, is to be hosted by Dublin Port who are one of a number of ports supportive of the project.

Looking for further reading on Tall Ships in Ireland? Click the links below:

Click this link to read all our Tall Ships Stories on one handy page


Previewing Ireland's Tall Ships 2011 Season


Can Ireland Get a New Tall Ship?

Published in Tall Ships
Fred Olsen Cruise Lines 28,388 tonnes Boudicca is to call to Dublin Port next month marking the inaugural cruiseship call for this year's season, writes Jehan Ashmore.
Over 200 cruise calls with around half a million passengers and crew are scheduled to visit the island of Ireland. The cruise sector business is estimated to generate €60m to the economies north and south.

Dublin Port last year had 88 cruisecalls and this number of vessels is to be closely repeated in 2011. One of the calls will be Princess Cruises 3,100 passenger Grand Princess. This was the first cruiseship of over 100,000grt to dock at Dublin which arrived on 31 August 2004 (click for photo on the day) and to read more about the cruiseship industry in Ireland from the IMDO click here.

Outside the capital the following vessels outlined are the first cruiseships to call at other ports in April. The season runs to September, though in recent years occasional calls are still made up to November.

The first cruise-caller at Waterford is Quark Expeditions adventure exploration vessel Ocean Nova. At only 2,118 tonnes the diminutive vessel is only 73m long and equally has the same number of passengers and a crew of 38.

Built in 1992 the polar adventure vessel has an ice-strengthened hull to enable the exploration of the icy waters of Greenland, the Weddell Sea and the Antarctic. A pair of Zodiac craft are provided for shore-landings.

The hosting of the Waterford Tall Ships Race Festival has led to funding of €1.7m from Failte Ireland to upgrade the city-centre's Frank Cassin Wharf. This will allow the large 'A' class tallships to berth and will be a lasting legacy of the festival. The wharf will then be used to berth cruiseships and other marine users. In total the crystal city is to welcome 12 callers to include the Crystal Serenity in July.

Cork is set to welcome 54 cruisecalls to include the return of the Cunard Line's 90,000grt Queen Victoria which made her first call to Cobh last year. The 2007 built vessel has a guest capacity for 2,000. The Cunard flagship Queen Mary is scheduled mid-September.

The deepwater berth at Cobh Cruise Terminal is capable of handling some of the largest cruiseships and which will see the return of the 122,000grt Celebrity Eclipse also in April.

Celebrity Eclipse made her maiden cruise and port of call to Cobh last year following her high profile repatriation voyage from Spain with stranded UK tourists arising from the fallout of the Icelandic volcanic ash-cloud. The 2,850 passenger €500m cruiseship which made an overnight call at Cobh during the May Bank holiday weekend.

From the south to the north at Belfast, the port's first caller on 24 April is the Ocean Nova which makes another appearance on the Irish cruiseship scene.

Belfast Harbour Commissioners have developed the 1km long Stormont Wharf to attract increasingly larger cruiseships to the city. The Ocean Nova's visit will mark over a dozen years since the first cruiseship docked in the northern capital.

In 2011 Belfast is scheduled to accommodate 30 cruise-calls bringing over 50,000 passengers to the city and surrounding environs.

Published in Cruise Liners
A courtesy call to Dublin of a German Navy task force group over the St. Patrick's weekend has been cancelled due to humanitarian relief operations off Libya, writes Jehan Ashmore.
The task force comprising of two frigates FGS Brandenburg (F 215) and FGS Rheinland-Pfalz (F 209) and an auxiliary oil tanker FGS Berlin (A 1411) were due to dock at the port in the early hours of next Friday.

All three visiting vessels were to be made open to the public over the weekend while berthed alongside the Deep Water (Coal) Quay downriver of the East-Link Toll-Lift road bridge.

FGS Brandenburg is the leadship of the Type-123 'Brandenburg' class. For a photo of the 4,900 tonnes frigate arriving in the Grand Harbour in Valleta, the capital of Malta (in 2004) click here.

The 20,240 displacement tonnes FGS Berlin is also the leadship of her namesake class of auxiliary fuel replenishment/stores-ship. The 174-metre long Berlin class ship (see photo) also has the capability to convey containers. The last of the trio, FGS Rheinland-Pfalz (photo) is a Bremen class frigate of 3,680 tonnes.

Since the Libyan crisis started in late February, the Maltese capital has been frequently used as a strategic transitional hub-port for naval vessels, including several calls by the UK's Type 22 frigate HMS Cumberland (F85). Earlier this month the Type 42 destroyer HMS York (D98) was also conducted to assist fleeing UK and foreign nationals from Benghazi.

In addition to other navies, Valletta has been used by ferries chartered by governments to assist in the evacuation of thousands of fleeing foreigners, mostly from Europe, though many other emigrants from Africa and Asia remain stranded.

Published in Ports & Shipping
12th March 2011

Tall Order for Ireland

Sailing in Ireland could yet have a tall ship to replace the Asgard II and the Lord Rank. A meeting in Dublin in late March represents a major step forward in the process to put an Irish tall ship back on the high seas.

The open workshop, to be held on March 26th, will be facilitated by Dublin Port, and will include state interests, tourism interests, commercial port interests, youth organisations, maritime organisations and education groups, together with the former Lord Rank and Asgard II operators.

The catalyst for the initiative is a 'reference group' which represents a broad cross-section of interests, both North and South. Operating under the chairmanship of Lord Glentoran, and supported by Dr Gerard O'Hare, David Beattie and Enda O'Coineen, the group has also engaged a professional consulting firm to move the process along.

The initial focus is on the necessary organisation and rationale behind building a new vessel, while scientifically quantifying the benefits to build a plan and justification.

The view taken is that, while there may be no money available at this time, there is no excuse for not having a plan and the idea is to create ' joined-up' thinking. And while the government in the South placed the insurance money paid out on Asgard II back into general exchequer funds, the insurance payment on the Lord Rank was kept and ' ring-fenced' for this new initiative.

To date, there have been several meetings of the reference group. The planned workshop on the subject at Dublin Port March 26 is open and interested parties are invited to contribute. It will also bring together for the first time the leaders of Tallships in Dublin, Belfast, Waterford and Cork.
Ultimately Tall Ships is about youth training and development; without an active Tall Ship, it will be very difficult for Ireland to attract Tall Ship events. The new reference group will work to support the new Sail Training Ireland Association initiative, and link in with Sail Training International which runs Tall Ship events.

Following the Dublin workshop, Belfast Harbour Commissioners will host a working meeting of the group in early May to finalise a plan, present to stakeholders and create a roadmap forward.

"In addition to youth training, a working Tall Ship forms a brilliant ambassadorial role promoting tourism, enterprise and commercial interests," said Lord Glentoran. "It is something that we can all relate to and it has universal acceptance for youth training on an island of Ireland basis." Lord Glentoran has a long commitment to youth sail training and was Chairman of the organising committee that brought the Tall Ships to Belfast in 1991.

The reference group is seeking to engage with as many stakeholders as possible, and has pledged that the new vessel will be owned by the community in Ireland and the Irish Diaspora. The initial view is that the project clearly needs to be linked with the institutions of State - North and South - as are universities state agencies and ports, while at the same time having a strong private support network making for a mix of public and private funding, "We now have a brilliant opportunity to look around the world, establish best practice in the best kind of vessel, how to fund it and to quantify the benefits for each of the stakeholder group," said Enda O'Coineen, who has been instrumental in bringing the group together. In addition to being a former Coiste and Asgard Director, he is the founding Chairman of Let's Do It Global, which brought the Volvo Ocean Race to Galway and successfully raced the Green Dragon around the world.

O'Coineen added that a "world class solution" can be created and that its benefits can be financially quantified, which would allow supporters to make a compelling business case to divert and use existing funds in Tourism, Enterprise and Youth Training. "While there is no money available now to support the scale and professionalism needed, this is not an excuse not to have a plan and a vision," he added.

Since the loss of the Asgard II and Lord Rank, Ireland has been left with no sail training opportunities for young people and likewise for maritime development, enterprise and tourism. If nothing is done, future generations will suffer. The reference group believes that the solution is the construction of an Ireland - North and South - training vessel, fulfilling several roles with a common mission and resourced according to quantifiable benefits delivered to stakeholders. It is also open to the use of an existing vessel - a key component being suitability and the operations budget.

The proposed Tall Ship project will enhance skills and opportunities for young people across the island, regardless of background, class or education. It could be used to showcase Ireland as a brand at overseas events and it could also host international students who wish to come to the island of Ireland, as is the case with many of the International Tall Ships Programmes already running on a global scale which create a huge amount of tourism for their respective countries.

The reference group notes that the Tall Ships concept appeals to young and old alike as the romanticism behind the concept touches on history, social studies, legacy, family, travel, adventure and, most importantly, fun. Tall Ships allow people to dream. They do however have an underlying seriousness and the concept is grounded in methodology that has been tested and proven the world over.

An advertisement in March/April of Afloat magazine - out now - gives full detials of the 'Tall Ship for Ireland' Workshop

Should Ireland be represented at the Tall Ships Races at Waterford 2011 and Dublin 2012? We want your vote on our Facebook Poll HERE.

Looking for further reading on Tall Ships in Ireland? Click the links below:

Click this link to read all our Tall Ships Stories on one handy page


Previewing Ireland's Tall Ships 2011 Season


Published in Tall Ships
The ro-ro freight-ferry Norcape departed Dublin Port this evening for what is believed to be her last sailing operating under the colours of P&O (Irish Sea) and in which the 1979 built vessel originally served a career with B+I Line as the Tipperary, writes Jehan Ashmore.
Replacing the 14,087gross tonnes vessel is the 22,152grt ro-pax European Endeavour which is expected to enter service next Tuesday. The vessel built in 2000, can take 130 lorries and has a larger passenger capacity for 210 passengers compared to the existing route's 17,464grt ro-pax sisters Norbay and Norbank.

This will enable P&O to offer up to three Ro-Pax style sailings a day on the 7.5 hour route instead of the previous two-plus one ro-ro (freight-only operated) service. The Norcape could take 125 drop trailers but only had 12-passenger cabins (for freight accompanied truck-drivers).

Norcape was only re-introduced onto the Irish Sea last year but made her final departure tonight as the vessel headed into a foggy Dublin Bay.

In 1979 the Japanese built vessel was launched as the Puma for P&O but was chartered to B+I Line and renamed Tipperary. During the 1980's the vessel first operated a then new Dublin-Fleetwood route jointly operated with P&O, alongside Tipperary's Ro-Ro sister, Ibex. The P&O brand name Pandoro cleverly stood for P and O Ro, their roll-on roll-off freight division. 

TIPPERARY

Cut-away deck profile of M.V. Tipperary and sistership of M.V. Ibex

The route's UK port switched to Liverpool in 1988 with Tipperary remaining on the route until sold to North Sea Ferries in 1989 and renamed Norcape. Prior to her transfer to the North Sea, the Tipperary collided with the 4,674grt bulker Sumburgh Head off the entrance to Dublin Port on 18 February 1988. For a report and photo taken of the two vessels which met at the port last year under different names click here.

Like the Tipperary the Sumburgh Head was built in Japan too by Hashihama Zosen KK, Imabari in 1977, yard no. 624. During her Dublin Bay incident, the vessel was owned by Christian Salvesen (Shipping) Ltd based in Edinburgh.

In 1990 she was sold to Barra Head Shipping Ltd and renamed Hood Head under the Irish flag. Three years later sold again to the KG Jebsen group and renamed Husnes.

The Panamanian flagged bulker remained with the Norwegian owner until 2003 when sold to her current owners, Wilson Shipowning AS of Bergen and renamed Wilson Tana, this time under the Maltese flag.

Published in Ferry
It was a Valentine's Day start for Seatruck Ferries opening of the Dublin-Heysham freight-only route, writes Jehan Ashmore.
Initiating the service, the port welcomed back a familiar vessel, the chartered Anglia Seaways which only a fortnight ago had operated the same route before DFDS Seaways closed Irish Sea operations.

The vessel has accommodation for 12 drivers. Most of the daily sailings depart Dublin at 15:15hrs and return from the Lancashire port at 02:15hrs. On certain days the schedules vary, to view the timetable click here.

In addition to the new route for Seatruck Ferries, the freight-only operator has a fleet of 8 vessels on routes between Dublin-Liverpool, Warrenpoint-Heysham and Larne-Heysham.

Anglia Seaways arrived into Dublin yesterday morning from Avonmouth Docks, where the 120 unit capacity vessel went into temporary lay-up period, since departing the Irish capital on 31 January (see related posting and photo).

The 13,073grt vessel revived the 8-hour route yesterday with an afternoon sailing bound for Heysham. The vessel was originally reported to be relocated to Baltic Sea operations, but with its charter to Seatruck, the DFDS Seaways funnel symbol of the Maltese cross was painted out.

Though, the Maltese cross can still be seen in Irish ports with calls made by sisterships, Dana Gothia (ex. Maersk Westland) and Dana Hollandia (formerly Maersk Waterford) which are part of the DFDS Group container subsidiary DFDS Logistics.

In total the Lo-Lo shipping division operates four vessels on several routing options with weekly calls to Belfast, Dublin, Cork and Waterford to Rotterdam and Zeebrugge.

The German built sisters originally operated Dublin-Rotterdam and Waterford-Rotterdam routes for Norfolk Line (a subsidiary of Maersk / A.P. Moller Group).Incidentally Maersk /Norfolkline also owned the Anglia Seaways until DFDS Seaways purchased the vessel last year.

Published in Ferry

The Dublin Port Company has approved for the railway extension of the existing track tramway on Alexandra Road in order to serve one of the port's Lo-Lo container terminals, writes Jehan Ashmore.

The new extension is to directly connect rail-freight trains to the Common User Container Terminal at Alexandra Quay East. The extension will make a right turn off the Alexandra Road immediately after the Tara Mines zinc unloading facility and then along the quayside to the terminal, close to Ocean Pier.

Currently there are three weekly rail-freight trains running between Ballina, Co. Mayo and Dublin port, where the containers are required to be loaded and unloaded on Alexandra Road. From this location they are transferred by road to the terminal. When the new rail-tramway is completed in April, this will reduce costs by eliminating the transfer.

The rail-freight service to Dublin Port started operations in August 2009 and is run as a public private partnership between International Warehousing & Transport (IWT), Iarnrod Eireann and Dublin Port. IWT is the only train operator to the port, but it is believed that the Dublin Port Company has received a number of enquiries from other port users who are interested in using the new facility.

IWT are also agents for Tschudi Shipping and Tschudi Logistics on services to the Belgium, The Netherlands, Scandinavia and the Baltic Sea which use the Common User Container Terminal. The terminal is operated by the Burke Shipping Group through its subsidiary Portroe Stevedores. Other clients using the terminal are Cobelfret, C2C Lines, APL, Coastal Containers, Evergreen, Gracechurch and OOCL.

In addition to the terminal, the port operates two other container facilities at the Dublin Ferryport Terminal (DFT) and the Marine Terminals Ltd (MTL). According to figures released yesterday, Dublin Port recorded growth in Lo-Lo container volumes by 1.1% with an outturn of 554,259 TEU in 2010.

Dublin Port's position as the island's largest Lo-Lo (unitised) port was reinforced by the rail-freight services to Ballina. According to IWT the service on an annual basis saves up to 5.5m road kilometres and CO2 emissions are reduced by as much as 2,750 tonnes. In addition the service removes up to 10,000 trucks away from the roads.

The Common User Container Terminal is also a multi-model terminal, as Ro-Ro traffic started in 2009 with the installation of a new ramp at berth 36/37 at Ocean Pier, Alexandra Basin East. In 2010 the port recorded Ro-Ro freight units increase by 12.8% to 725,665 which is less than 1% down from the port's highest ever throughput.

Ro-Ro growth in 2010 was driven in part by the new CLdN /Cobelfret Ro-Ro services to Zeebrugge and Rotterdam. CLdN's ro-ro Yasmine made a recent first-time visit to the port followed by the newest vessel of the Belgium owned fleet, Amandine (see photo) the last of six con-ro newbuilds, which too made an inaugural visit to the port. The 195-m vessel departed from the upgraded ramp at Ocean Pier yesterday bound for Rotterdam.

For further port traffic figures which showed an overall increase in the port's volumes of 6.1% in 2010, logon here

Published in Ports & Shipping

Dublin Port Company today published trade statistics for 2010 which showed an increase in the port's volumes of 6.1% in 2010.

Total throughput for the year was 28.1m tonnes which is less than 10% down from the port's best ever performance in 2007 at the height of the boom. Export traffic was particularly strong with 12.6% growth in the year.

Screen_shot_2011-02-08_at_11.27.28

Growth was concentrated in the unitised modes but was partially offset by declines in bulk liquid and bulk solid cargoes due directly to the sluggish performance of the economy.

The volume of Ro-Ro freight units increased by 12.8% to 725,665 which is less than 1% down from the port's highest ever throughput. This performance confirms Dublin Port as the island's premier port for Ro-Ro. Growth in the year was driven in part by the new CLdN Ro-Ro services to Zeebrugge and Rotterdam.

Growth in Lo-Lo container volumes was 1.1% with an outturn of 554,259 TEU in 2010.

Dublin's position as the island's largest unitised port was reinforced by the commencement of rail freight services linking Dublin to Ballina. Demand for these services continues to grow and during 2011, we expect rail freight to remove up to 10,000 trucks from the road.

Further underpinning Dublin Port's popularity among RoRo shipping lines was the decision by Seatruck Ferries yesterday to announce a new freight- only service linking Dublin with Heysham which will commence Monday 14 Feb 2011.

Imports of fuel oil products (motor fuel and aviation spirit) dropped 6.5% in the year to 3.8m tonnes. Notwithstanding this decline, Dublin Port remains the country's most important port for oil imports, accounting for more than 50% of national demand.

In the bulk solid mode, there was a 7.9% decline to 1.5m tonnes in the year due to the continued decline in demand for construction materials. Trade cars imported through Dublin Port doubled to 47,249 in the year and there was also a strong performance in the ferry passenger business with numbers up 17.6% to 1.8m.

Screen_shot_2011-02-08_at_11.27.36

In addition to the ferry business, Dublin Port remained the country's largest port for cruise ship visits with 85 cruise ship calls bringing 130,000 tourists and crew to the city during the year.

Discussing Dublin Port Company's outlook for trade levels in 2011, Eamonn O'Reilly, Chief Executive of Dublin Port Company, said:

"2010 was an exceptional year for Dublin Port. Notwithstanding the poor performance of the economy, port volumes grew by 6.1% as importers and exporters sought to minimise the cost of moving goods to market. Passenger and tourism volumes were also very buoyant as the benefits and reliability of ferry travel became clear particularly during the ash-cloud crisis.

"For 2011, we are projecting continued growth, albeit at a reduced level compared to 2010."Dublin Port's success is due to its location at the centre of the largest concentration of population on the island and also to the exceptional connections to the national road and rail networks. Dublin is close to the main markets, and shipping services are available from a wide range of excellent ferry and container lines offering importers and exporters competitive and reliable routes to market. We are very conscious of the central role Dublin Port plays in facilitating merchandise trade, the value of which is in excess of 80% of Ireland's GDP, and we are committed to continuing to develop the port in line with the needs of the economy and funded from our own resources."

Dublin Port Company's Annual Report for 2010 will be published later in the year.

Published in Dublin Port
Page 45 of 49

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