Affected by trade frictions after Brexit, UK-Ireland freight rates fell 29%
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The post-Brexit trade frictions have “significantly changed” freight flows between the UK and the Republic of Ireland, as Irish companies choose Send the goods directly to Europe, According to an official report.
Since the Brexit agreement came into effect in January, the volume of ro-ro cargo transported between the UK and Ireland has fallen by nearly a third Irish exporter Watch to avoid Customs delay risk On the border between the United Kingdom and the European Union.
According to data from the Irish Maritime Development Office, the volume of ro-ro shipments between Ireland and the United Kingdom fell to 355,000 in the first half of 2021, a 29% decrease from the same period in 2019.
At the same time, the share of ro-ro transportation between the UK and Ireland fell from 84% two years ago to 67% in the second quarter of this year.
In contrast, in the first six months of this year, the volume of freight that avoided the UK to the EU doubled, making the total share of ro-ro freight directly to Europe accounted for one-third of all freight volume.
The report added: “From the beginning of 2021, it is clear that transport companies based in Northern Ireland have transferred part of their traffic from ro-ro transport services in the Republic of Ireland to avoid new customs requirements between Irish and British ports.”
Peter Summerton, managing director of McCulla Ireland, Ireland’s leading transporter, said on Thursday that a dramatic shift in the direct ferry route from Ireland to Europe has occurred because Irish companies just decided to avoid crossing the UK on the way. The risks of EU customers go through the so-called “land bridge”.
“The land bridge is the most cost-effective route between Ireland and the EU, but the cost-benefit analysis has changed because as goods enter the EU from the UK, the product may be stuck on a check,” he said.
The statistics highlight how Irish importers and exporters are realigning their supply chains at the expense of Welsh ports (such as Holyhead and Fishgard) and trucking groups operating in the UK.
“Ferry companies have opened up new routes, and supply bases have also poured in. This may take longer and costs hundreds of pounds, but there is no risk of product cards for a day-it reduces the supply chain risks for suppliers and transporters. ,” Somerton added.
Ferry operator Stena Line, Irish Ferries, CLdN and Brittany Ferries launched new direct flights from Ireland to destinations such as Zeebrugge, Bilbao and Santander this year.
Stena Line, which operates ferries and ports on the Irish Sea in the United Kingdom, said it had doubled the capacity of the Rosslare-Cherbourg route before the new Brexit trade arrangement came into effect in January last year and added more in the spring. Capacity.
The company said that compared with the pre-Brexit period, the capacity of direct routes from Ireland to Europe is still more than twice that of pre-Brexit routes, but the freight volume on routes from Ireland and Northern Ireland to the UK has begun to pick up.
“The land bridge transaction volume has not yet returned to the pre-Brexit level, which is expected, but with the relaxation of Covid-19 restrictions, we are starting to see more customers choose land bridges again. We also see from Belfast There has been an increase in traffic on routes departing from Liverpool, Haysham and Kane Ryan,” it added.
The Irish government agency stated that the data for the second quarter clearly showed changes in trade flows between the two countries after Brexit, which was distorted by Brexit-related inventory and coronavirus lockdown measures in the first three months of this year.