Freight News, Rail, Sea

Partners pledge to boost Türkiye-UK sea and rail route

[ November 17, 2023   //   ]

Transport operators, DFDS and VIIA and the French ports of Sète and Calais signed a memorandum of understanding at the Logitrans exhibition in Istanbul  on 16 November to improve connections between the Mediterranean and Northern Europe.

The aim of the agreement between the four partners is to improve the flow and reliability of trade between Türkiye, the EU and the UK by ferry and rail.

This will include DFDS’s Yalova-Sète and Izmir-Sète routes, rail services to the port of Calais by the French railways’ logistics arm, VIIA, and from there to Tilbury, by DFDS.

The partners aim to optimize thetiming of ro ro services in the Mediterranean with trains in France and departures of English Channel shipping services. It agreement also includes advance filing of customs declarations.

Moving a trailer by rail instead of road from Turkey will cut carbon emissions by around a tonne, says the partners.

VIIA chairman Charles Puech d’Alissac, said: “It makes a lot of sense to connect the Motorways of the Sea and the Rail Motorways at certain ports in Europe, allowing rail frequencies to serve a market looking for decarbonisation solutions. VIIA and the horizontal loading technology of the LOHR wagon make it possible to connect the Mediterranean Sea and the English Channel for semi-trailers by rail.”

DFDS Vice President and Head of the Mediterranean Business Unit, Lars Hoffmann added: “We are always looking at ways to bring extra value to our customers and to serve them faster and better. By collaborating with leading ports Port of Calais, Port of Sète and VIIA, one of Europe’s leading railway operators, we make it easier for Turkish hauliers and companies to do business in Europe, as we provide them with direct, fast and efficient access and with low-carbon transportation.”

General manager of the Port of Calais, Benoît Rochet, said: “The Port of Calais welcomes the signing of this quadripartite agreement with DFDS, VIIA, and the Port of Sète, which will, I am sure, make trade between Türkiye and the UK more reliable. The organization set up with our partners will guarantee the best logistics performance at the service of Turkish carriers and their customers and will facilitate access to the British market.”