December 11 2013 Latest news:
Tuesday, August 20, 2013
Experts have given Britain’s biggest port a significant boost in its battle for business with its newest rival.
Fears have been expressed that the Port of Felixstowe could lose customers to London Gateway when the new £1.5billion terminal opens this year.
The new deep-sea container port, owned by DP World, is known to have been targeting Felixstowe’s – and other port’s – customers for some time in its bid to win business.
However, a report from consultants MDS Transmodal commisioned by Felixstowe claims the Suffolk port will be up to £25 per box cheaper than London Gateway, which could save £50,000 on a large vessel’s visit.
MDS Transmodal said: “Even where a shipping line offers a shipper the same rate quay to quay, the shipper should still make a saving of £8 per container on inland costs.”
Advantages included faster transport times, less road congestion, cheaper navigation dues and a 76-mile shorter sea journey for ships also visiting other European ports.
Gateway has been keen pushing its advantages, especially its huge logistics park.
Felixstowe chief executive officer Clemence Cheng said evidence gathered by MDS Transmodal clearly demonstrated the port’s location, scale and rail links gave it a significant cost advantage for importers and shipping lines over other ports.
Transport secretary Patrick McLoughlin said: “I don’t necessarily think that we should be looking at it as a bad thing for Felixstowe, competition is a good thing. The truth is world trade is growing and it is important we are in a position to make the most use of it.”