Monday 20 August 2018

Truckers to face 9km tailbacks at Dublin Port after Brexit

'In the meantime, Government plans to ramp up infrastructure investment should be targeted at ensuring that whatever Brexit deal is arrived at means the least interruption for trade' Photo: Gareth Chaney Collins
'In the meantime, Government plans to ramp up infrastructure investment should be targeted at ensuring that whatever Brexit deal is arrived at means the least interruption for trade' Photo: Gareth Chaney Collins
Donal O'Donovan

Donal O'Donovan

Dublin Port could face 9km tailbacks of trucks and will need three hectares of extra space to cope with a full customs regime being reintroduced as a result of Brexit, the British Irish Chamber of Commerce has warned.

A worst-case scenario Brexit, with the reintroduction of a full customs regime, would mean stopping all of the 400,000 trucks a year that cross from Dublin to Holyhead and back, the chamber's director general John McGrane told the Irish Independent.

He was speaking ahead of today's publication of the chamber's 'Policy Paper on Infrastructure'.

Brexit potentially means interrupting a highly efficient port infrastructure that currently accounts for 80pc of all freight trade into and out of the country, he said.

Business needs to campaign now, for a Brexit settlement that won't mean every truck being stopped, he said.

In the meantime, Government plans to ramp up infrastructure investment should be targeted at ensuring that whatever Brexit deal is arrived at means the least interruption for trade.

"Substantial investment is required in ports, airports, transport, water services and broadband," the reports says.

Investment in ports infrastructure should be targeted to ensure goods leaving Dublin can continue to cross the UK so-called land bridge to markets in northern Europe, while Rosslare and Cork can be used to access southern Europe.

"It is almost inconceivable that Irish exporters would have to go around the UK (rather than crossing from Holyhead to the Channel ports by land), trade with northern Europe relies on the land bridge," Mr McGrane said.

To keep it open, a Brexit deal will have to include recognition of driver permits for those crossing Britain as well as a customs agreement, he said.

There is an opportunity now to influence the outcome of Brexit talks under way in Brussels.

"We're calling for a national discussion.

"We think the Government is doing an excellent job, but now is the time for businesses to be laying out clear priorities," he said.

Irish Independent

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