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Channel Ferries: Freight

Question for Department for Transport

UIN HL13037, tabled on 22 January 2019

To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of whether there will be severe disruption of freight traffic in a no-deal Brexit scenario; and what plans, if any, they have to ensure smooth trade operations between the UK and France after Brexit.

Answered on

5 February 2019

UK border controls will prioritise freight flow, partly by taking newly-required checks away from the frontier as far as possible.

Disruption is, however, possible in a no-deal scenario if third-country controls applied at EU ports, particularly on the short Strait, are onerous. The reasonable worst case scenario being used as a planning assumption is one in which flow through the short Channel crossings (both imports and exports) is reduced very significantly for up to 6 months; and where a substantial percentage of agrifood products would have to be routed away from these locations.

The contracts we have agreed with ferry companies DFDS, Brittany Ferries and Seaborne Freight will contribute to ensuring smooth trade operations by enhancing ro-ro capacity available on Channel and North Sea crossings.