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UK’s Major Ports welcome Government Port Connectivity Study – a more integrated approach is crucial to boost trade and jobs across the economy

The U.K. Major Ports Group (“UKMPG”), the body representing the global gateways for 75% of the U.K.’s seaborne trade, today welcomed the launch of the Government’s Port Connectivity Study.

There is significant value to the UK economy from making a step change in port connectivity. Key to realising this potential is developing a more integrated strategy for the U.K.’s main trade enabling freight corridors. Delivering on the Study and building from it will therefore be crucial to boost post-Brexit trade, growth and jobs.

James Cooper, Chair of UKMPG and Chief Executive of Associated British Ports commented “The Port Connectivity Study is very welcome. U.K. Major Ports Group members invest more than half a billion pounds a year in U.K. ports and infrastructure. But for the U.K. to maximise the value of this investment for the nation these ports need to be well connected to the rest of the economy. The Study’s recognition of the need to take a joined up, multi modal approach to key trade enabling freight corridors anchored on major ports is particularly welcome.

James continued “As the U.K. nears Brexit it’s vital that there is a focus on ensuring that we have the right infrastructure to enable trade. With ports handling 95% of the UKs trade in goods the Port Connectivity Study is therefore as timely as it is welcome.”

Nusrat Ghani, Maritime Minister said “A key message of the Study is that port connectivity is wider than just a ports matter, but has implications for the wider business community and the economy.

Improving port connectivity can not only complement the significant infrastructure investments being made by UKMPG members and the broader port industry, but it can provide cost, productivity, and competitiveness benefits for wider business. For example, it is also important to freight, retailing and manufacturing industries. This report highlights that government is taking this issue seriously and we look forward to working with ports, linked freight industries, and wider industrial sectors, to take forward its findings.”

The U.K. Major Ports Group is also pleased to support the evening Ministerial Reception, hosted by UKMPG member DP World, as part of the launch of the Port Connectivity Study. Commenting, Tim Morris, UKMPG Chief Executive, said “UKMPG is particularly pleased to be supporting this event as it brings together major logistics players and key customers as well as the ports sector. This kind of cross supply chain approach is crucial for delivering a better freight network for the UK with big benefits for U.K. firms and, ultimately, consumers.”