Brexit ends UK ‘land bridge’ for Ireland-EU trade

DUBLIN, Jan 21 (Reuters) – The British land bridge that offered traders the fastest route between Ireland and mainland Europe before Brexit will not re-emerge as the preferred option for moving goods, a port chief from Dublin said on Friday.

The introduction of controls on some goods since Britain left the European Union’s commercial orbit in late 2020 led to a sharp decline in trade between the country and Ireland, an EU member, and an increase in maritime routes from Ireland. to the European continent.

Volume of accompanying cargo on the main route between Dublin and the UK fell 21%, while 259,000 units on direct routes to mainland Europe represented a threefold increase, according to figures from Ireland’s largest port.

“The land bridge is gone. It hasn’t come back. I thought it would, but it didn’t and no one is suggesting that, because the UK hasn’t introduced import controls yet. I don’t think the land bridge is recovering,” Dublin Port Director General Eamonn O’Reilly told the Irish. Times.

A port spokesman confirmed the quote was accurate.

For decades, land bridges offered the fastest and most reliable route to mainland Europe. It involves a short sea crossing between Dublin and Holyhead in Wales, and then a jump between Dover and Calais in France.

The second largest port, Rosslare, in the southeast of the country, also benefits from a move to a direct European route, while more Irish goods are shipped to the UK via Northern Ireland, as there are no controls on British-administered ports. region. (Reporting by Padraic Halpin; translated by José Muñoz in the Gdansk newsroom. Edited by Javier Leira)

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