Four ferry firms awarded multi-million-pound post-Brexit freight contracts

Four ferry firms awarded multi-million-pound post-Brexit freight contracts

The Government has signed agreements with four ferry operators to provide extra freight capacity post Brexit. 

The contracts with Brittany Ferries, DFDS, P&O and Stena, collectively worth £77.6 million, will focus on nine routes serving eight ports in areas less likely to experience disruption. These include Felixstowe, Harwich, Hull, Newhaven, Poole, Portsmouth, Teesport and Tilbury.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said: “As the transition period comes to an end, we’re putting the necessary measures in place to safeguard the smooth and successful flow of freight.

“Securing these contracts ensures that irrespective of the outcome of the negotiations, lifesaving medical supplies and other critical goods can continue to enter the UK from the moment we leave the EU.

The contracts will be in place for up to six months after the end of the transition period. Should the contracts not be required, “termination costs would reflect a fraction of the full contract amount”, the government said.

Contracts were awarded through the Government’s Freight Capacity Framework, which sees a shortlist of experienced freight operators bid for contracts.

Routes out of Dover and Folkestone across the Short Strait remain a vital corridor for trade between the UK and mainland Europe. The government said “it continues to work with key local stakeholders and industry to prepare for the end of the transition period”.