First freight shipment to arrive on ‘Brexit buster’ Morocco to UK route

The Port of Poole, in Dorset, is anticipating its first delivery via a new direct shipping route from Tangier in Morocco. The route has been established by maritime and transport specialist, United Seaways.

A shipment of 100 freights of organic seasonal fruit and vegetables is shortly scheduled northbound. The route will now run once per week and largely comprise the transportation of dry and refrigerated freight.

The link cuts overall journey times on goods to and from the UK to fewer than three days, compared to more than six days via road. It will be used to encourage British importers to source fresh produce and other products directly from Africa, and export companies looking to enhance their southbound trade to Morocco and the surrounding region. Trade relations between the UK and Morocco have a long-standing history of over 800 years, and it is anticipated the link will further strengthen ties between the countries.

The route has been in planning for over two years and will help bypass post-Brexit traffic congestion and import procedures on goods arriving via Europe. It will also significantly reduce emissions compared to current logistic chains by road.

In addition, the fallout from the current pandemic has caused global supply chain bottlenecks, shortages and disruption to the shipping industry, with sharp increases to ocean-going freight rates.

Alongside its strategic logistics partners, United Seaways will be able to offer the new direct line with the most competitive rates, significant emissions reduction, full logistics services including road haulage, door to door services, custom clearance services and warehousing services as demanded by exporters and importers.

To offer this service and to overcome the present global supply chain disruption, current and future HGV driver shortages with the most competitive rates, United Seaways will shift from a RoRo service (unaccompanied cargo only) to RoPax service (accompanied cargo).

Captain Brian Murphy, Marine and Port Director at Poole Harbour Commissioners, said: “The Port of Poole has been working closely with United Seaways to get this ‘Brexit Buster’ service up and running. The service will provide a greener and more time efficient option for importers and exporters from both kingdoms and we look forward to receiving the first shipment from Tangiers shortly.”

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