As part of Brexit preparations, TEC-Farragon, a Scottish company, is reportedly in an advanced stage of establishing a ferry service between the Eemshaven in Groningen and Rosyth near Edinburgh.
Translation by Traci White
RTV Noord reports that the ferries will primarily transport freight, but they will also be able to transport a large number of passengers and vehicles. The ferry line would be one of the biggest shipping projects in the history of the northern Dutch harbour.
TEC-Farragon is allegedly planning to use ferries from the Stena Line and eventually operate a daily service between The Netherlands and Scotland. The ferries would most likely moor at the Sealane Terminals quay, a company which recently set aside 6.5 million euros for the construction of a new cold storage facility.
According to RTV Noord, the Scottish company is eyeing the Eemshaven because of its close access to popular European markets for Scottish whisky and timber, namely Germany and Denmark. The nearby A7 motorway is also a plus for the company.
The deadline for a new Brexit deal is 31 October, and current negotiations give the distinct impression that a no-deal Brexit is a realistic possibility. Among the biggest ramifications of that scenario are the return of a hard Irish border and potentially days-long bottlenecks for lorries at Dover and Calais. With that in mind, the Scottish company is looking to establish an alternative European port for trade.
If Scotland were to follow through on a second independence referendum of its own, the link with the harbour in the Eemshaven would enable them to continue to trade with the continent with relative ease.
The ferry line also presents a new travel connection for northern European and Scottish passengers alike: the overnight journey would take 20 hours, but it is not yet clear how much tickets for the ferry would cost. Ferry service could begin as early as October, even though quite a few details still need to be filled in, such as ensuring safe mooring under various weather conditions, creating a customs office and adequate parking.
A ferry service to the German island of Borkum already departs from the Eemhaven on the AG EMS Borkum line, and since 2018, the harbour has had its own Arriva train station connecting to Groningen.
Econ 050: Brexit and The Netherlands
An increasing number of companies with links to the United Kingdom are strengthening their connections with The Netherlands, with some businesses shutting down their UK facilities and relocating altogether. During one of our first episodes of Econ 050, we sat down with professor Bart Los to hear more about what tangible consequences Brexit could have on jobs and livelihoods in the United Kingdom and in The Netherlands.
Correction: An earlier version of this article misspelled “whisky”. This has been corrected.