Harbour News

Published: October 10, 2021 | Updated: October 11, 2021

First freight shipment set to arrive on ‘Brexit buster’ direct Morocco to Poole route shortly

The Port of Poole which will shortly see the start of a new direct freight link with Tangier in Morocco.
By Andrew Diprose, editor

A new direct shipping route from Tangier in Morocco to the Port of Poole – described as a ‘Brexit Buster’ – is due to get underway shortly.

The first shipment will be 100 freights of organic seasonal fruit and vegetables.

The route will run once a week and largely transport dry and refrigerated freight.

As first reported by Dorset Biz News, the route has been established by maritime and transport specialist, United Seaways.

The link cuts overall journey times on goods to and from the UK to fewer than three days.

That compares 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.

Export companies looking to enhance their southbound trade to Morocco and the surrounding region are also expected to be attracted by the new route.

Trade relations between the UK and Morocco have a long-standing history stretching back more than 800 years.

Both countries have a free trade agreement in place.

Under the agreement consumers in the UK continue to benefit from lower prices on goods imported from Morocco, such as fruit and vegetables.

Meanwhile, consumers in Morocco have lower tariffs on products such as dairy products, meat, fruit and vegetables from the UK.

It is anticipated the new link will further strengthen ties between the countries.

The route has been in the planning for more than 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.

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

Alongside its strategic logistics partners, United Seaways says it will be able to offer the new direct line with the most competitive rates, significant emissions reduction and full logistics services.

They include road haulage, door to door, custom clearance and warehousing services as demanded by exporters and importers.

To offer this service, and to overcome the present global supply chain disruption and, 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, pictured left, 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 Tangier shortly.”

  • United Seaways has announced the appointment of Amine Laghidi as Board Member in charge of strategy, public affairs, maritime and foreign trade.

His career has led him to four continents where he held leading positions in the maritime, international logistics, finance, industry, infrastructures and energy private and public sectors.

He is currently a representative of the African and the Moroccan Business Associations including being President of the ASMEX-Rabat (Moroccan Exporters Association).