Plans for a ferry service between Scotland and the Netherlands could help mitigate post-Brexit chaos, it was said.
The Scottish firm TEC-Offshore, the company behind it, has announced that it has signed ferry leases to operate the service. Its goal is to make it operational by the end of October. However, the proposal for a freight-passenger link between Rosyth and Eemshaven in the Groningen region of the Netherlands still faces major obstacles.
TEC-Offshore confirmed that it was working on projects that would give Scotland a direct ferry connection with Europe.
After the disclosure of a document revealing the potential trade risks identified by the UK Government's Yellowhammer operation, the project is being presented as offering business ventures with Europe a potential alternative to some of the ports from south of England, threatened by queues and delays. and disturbances, especially in the case of a Brexit "without agreement".
TEC-Offshore's director, David Kellas, told Dutch broadcasters that it would be very difficult to have an operational service by October 31 announced by Brexit, announced by Boris. Johnson. Describing the deadline as ambitious, he added: "But we are an ambitious company".
Read more: Boris Johnson under pressure to recall Parliament following warnings without agreement on Brexit
According to the proposal, ferries would daily shuttle between Fife and Groningen. Although they mainly carry cargo, the company also wants to attract tourists. Eemshaven is considered to have good connections for the continuous distribution of products such as whiskey and wood.
However, it is not clear that the port currently has the capacity to accept passengers, according to the NL Times, a customs office still needs to be built and question marks on the car parks. In the meantime, it is not clear how much more than 20 hours of sailing time would be of interest to passengers.
TEC-Farragon has discussed its plans with the Scottish Government, but while the company is seeking substantial support of some £ 40m, Scottish ministers have also indicated that a service should be commercially self-sufficient. .
A freight connection between Rosyth and Zeebrugge was canceled only last year as P & O operators were unable to make it financially viable.
Read more: UK faces potential shortage of food, fuel and drugs with Brexit without agreement
Nevertheless, Margaret Simpson, policy officer for Scotland and North England at the Freight Transport Association, told Reuters that the project to connect Rosyth to Eemshaven could make sense even in the future. 39, absence of Brexit. "It makes a lot of sense, given the potential delays," she added. "Rather than go to the south of England to queuing, just make the road to Rosyth."
The Groningen seaports declined to comment on plans for a new ferry service for the broadcaster. "We never make statements on contacts, but only on contracts," said Erik Bertholet, head of logistics. "But of course, I will not deny those plans either."
Ksaja Ollongren, Dutch Deputy Prime Minister, tweeted: "It's good that Scots see Groningen as the gateway to Europe".