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EUROPEAN NEWS

Dover is ready to welcome customers into the future

Mar 20, 2019
A recent communication from the Port of Dover claims that the port is ready to handle whatever the future throws at it, Brexit or no Brexit.

The Port of DoverThe press release said that the UK’s planned departure from the EU has changed the way people think about the logistics industry and supply chains. “Never has there been more public scrutiny on trade and the efficient movement of goods,” a spokesman said.

The release pointed out that despite many changes, Dover still has two ferry operators and a fleet of 12 dedicated ferries to be capable of handling up to 10,000 lorries a day. It states that Dover will remain the only place from which such a fleet can achieve up to 120 ferry movements a day turning vessels around in just 45-50 minutes on the shortest sea crossing. 

Dover acknowledges that external factors such as border controls may slow things down, but they will do that at every EU-facing gateway across the country. What makes Dover different is that it has the experience of how to deal with major disruption and find a way through.

Within a few days of the last significant incident of Operation Stack in the summer of 2015, Dover was once again handling record volumes. Every year Dover manages smaller disruptions through its continuing professional approach.

The entire operating system – the port and its infrastructure, border controls and ferry operations - is designed around the fast paced, seamless movement of traffic.  The port says it has been working closely with its Border Delivery Group for some time, a cross-government group coordinating Brexit planning across Whitehall and with a firm remit to keep traffic flowing across the Channel.

Preparation is key and it will be essential that the UK government and its agencies - as well as the European Union and its Member States – provide the necessary information to the logistics community so it has what it needs to plan for and prepare the required documentation in advance of lorries arriving at ports.

Kasper Moos, Managing Director of DFDS in Dover, said: “We have been preparing for a wide range of scenarios for some time along with the port and our partners. We have adapted our IT systems and are building customs expertise so we can offer customs and other services to our customers to help mitigate any effect. We are now intensifying work to ensure those customers are preparing for any new border processes in order to protect their business and keep people and goods flowing through this vital trade route.”

David Stretch, P&O Ferries’ Managing Director - Short Routes, said: “As long as there are goods and people travelling between the UK and Europe, P&O Ferries will continue to provide a comprehensive ferry and logistics service to and from the continent. We have been working with the authorities on detailed preparations to support our operation at Dover which, along with our ports on the east coast of England, will continue to give customers a range of options for connecting with Europe under every scenario.”

Doug Bannister, the port’s new chief executive, said: “Throughout the Brexit debate, what people have been desiring is certainty. Uncertainty is continuing, but we are prepared. We will continue to manage our infrastructure professionally and our team stands ready to handle whatever comes our way. We look forward to welcoming customers on 29 March, 30 March and far into the future.”

 

 

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