Northern Ireland protocol deal could lead to more truck traffic returning to ports in Republic, says Port of Rosslare boss – The Irish Times | Pro IQRA News

Northern Ireland protocol deal could lead to more truck traffic returning to ports in Republic, says Port of Rosslare boss – The Irish Times

 | Pro IQRA News

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The Port Director of Rosslare said new green and red lane checks at Northern Ireland ports could lead to truck freight operators redirecting some traffic to ports in the Republic.

Port Director Glenn Carr told the Oireachtas EU Affairs Committee on Wednesday morning that while it awaits the “good news” of the Windsor framework removing some checks at northern ports, new red lane checks for EU-bound goods from Britain could see shipping. Return to the ports of the republic.

said Mr Carr, director of business units at Iarnród Éireann, operator of the southeastern port.

New Post-Brexit Trade Arrangements in the North

Barry O’Connell, chief executive of Dublin Port, said he did not expect changes in traffic volumes at the port from the new post-Brexit trade arrangements for Northern Ireland.

He told the committee it was “very early days” to assess the impact of the Windsor deal, but he had spoken to management at Belfast Port and port operators in Ireland and the UK.

“The consensus seems to be that trade has found a natural place to settle over the last couple of years and I don’t think it’s going to have a material impact in terms of the additional impact in shifts in volume relative to where we are at the moment,” he said.

The Oireachtas panel heard from managers at the state’s two major ports about the dramatic increases they have seen in truck freight volumes with EU ports and the shift away from UK ferry routes in favor of direct EU routes as traders avoid Brexit border checks with Britain.

Mr O’Connell told the committee that in the year after Brexit took effect, the Port of Dublin lost freight trucks to Northern Ireland ports increasing its share of ro-ro (Ro-A) freight volumes from 41 per cent. in 2020 to 45 percent in 2021. This fell to 42 percent last year.

Mr O’Connell said this indicated a “more stable situation” with Brexit border controls, while the initial changes were due to a “stabilization period” as operators adapted to border restrictions.

Dublin Port’s share recovered from 46 per cent in 2021 to 48 per cent last year, while Rosslare’s share of ro-ro traffic volumes increased over the same period from 6 per cent to 9 per cent.

Carr said there was a “disproportionate” increase in traffic immediately after Brexit took effect in 2021 using the port of Belfast to transport goods to and from Britain.

Rosslare Europort, the country’s closest port to mainland Europe, recorded the largest increase in truck freight with ports in mainland Europe EU freight has grown by nearly 400 percent over the past two years with the number of weekly ferry services rising from six to 36.

Carr said there has been a 36 per cent drop in freight traffic with the UK since 2021, which represents “a significant shift in the supply chain between Ireland and the UK”.

Carr said companies in certain sectors have moved their supply chain from the UK to mainland Europe to avoid the costs and risks associated with post-Brexit border controls.

He said the growing services to Europe were “essential” to export-import supply lines and provided an alternative to the UK’s land bridge, “the preferred route before Brexit”.

O’Connell said ro-ro freight volumes with major EU ports were up 64 per cent compared to 2019 while ro-ro volumes with UK ports were down about 18 per cent.