Feature, Freight News, Sea

Successful first year for Ireland-US link

[ June 29, 2021   //   ]

Independent liner operator Direct Container Service has celebrated the first year of its service between Cork and the US, the only direct route between Ireland and North America.

ICL says that exports from Ireland have increased five-fold in its first year, and imports have doubled, including refrigerated pharma and foodstuffs, beverages, healthcare products, building materials, chemicals, auto parts, paper and packaging products.

The weekly service reaches Chester PA in 10 days and Wilmington NC in 13 days. ICL has also set up a weekly guaranteed less than container load (LCL) service, in both directions, with container freight stations in Dublin and Cork.  

ICL general manager UK & Ireland, Paul Sanders, said: “We’ve been very pleased with how our first year, calling directly into Cork, has developed. It has been especially pleasing given this has been done during a pandemic, which meant we could not visit or hold face to face meetings, ahead of starting the service. It’s a testament to the great partnership we’ve developed with the Port of Cork, that we have been able to make this happen.”

Port of Cork chief commercial officer, Conor Mowlds, added: “With Cork Container Terminal in Ringaskiddy on the horizon, we have the potential to further support ICL and grow cargo volumes from and to Ireland. This is a fantastic strategic development for the Port of Cork as we look to develop Ringaskiddy as a modern logistics hub.”

President of Cork Chamber, Paula Cogan, said: ‘The direct shipping route from the Port of Cork to the USA with ICL has been an excellent strategic enhancement to connectivity for our city region and country. The Port’s ongoing investment in the €80 million Cork Container Terminal in Ringaskiddy is proving visionary and best in class infrastructure builds confidence and attracts investment. It is important now that Government supports the demand for connectivity with border and customs inspection infrastructure at the Port of Cork to allow this growth trajectory to continue.’

Site Leader at Pfizer Pharmaceuticals (Cork) and Chair of AmCham’s Southern Region Seamus Fives, said that Ireland ranks fifth in the world for global exports of Covid-19 related goods: “The Cork Port route to the US has offered greater accessibility for the movement of goods and services, which further strengthens our position as a global location of choice for inward investment.”

Agent for the service is Johnson Stevens with offices in Dublin and Belfast. Joint MD of, Martina Creamer, said: “We are hugely proud to be managing this ground-breaking Trans-Atlantic service for ICL and have been delighted with the support from the Irish shipping community. We look forward to the new Cork Container Terminal opening soon, and further developing this great service.”