AEO stands Forth Ports in good stead

Brexit may be a big uncertainty, but there are things operators can do to prepare for it. All Forth Ports apart from Dundee have now gained AEO-C (customs) and AEO-S (security) status, says chief operating officer, Stuart Wallace. “It makes for ease of discussion

with our customers, knowing that we are as best prepared as we can be,” he explains. “And it is also part of our strategy of making it as easy as possible for customers to do business with us.” All ports within the group now

have both types of accreditation apart from Dundee; one of the criteria for certification is that the port concerned must have handled a certain level of non-EU trade and Dundee’s traffic has until now been UK and EU-orientated. However, Forth Ports hopes that it too will gain AEO status. Business in Scotland is pretty

good, Wallace continues, and Forth Ports is continuing its strategy of serving Scotland’s major industries – namely oil and gas, food and drink, chemicals and tourism. Meanwhile, Wallace and his team is heavily marketing the

facilities at Rosyth, which lost its regular DFDS ro ro link to Zeebrugge earlier this year aſter a vessel fire. There is still strong interest in the Benelux countries in reviving the service, says Wallace, who says that Forth Ports is “open to any discussions”. However, he adds: “We do

recognise that geographical distance makes a ro ro service to Scotland difficult to run.” The future for Rosyth may lie in making use of its ramp for windfarm or project freight, much of which increasingly uses ro ro vessels. The other possibility would

be to develop agricultural traffic, taking advantage of the port’s unique position adjacent to the new Forth Road Bridge and the Scottish motorway network. Indeed, Forth Ports efforts

here have already borne fruit with Cefetra signing a long- term contract to use the port. Forth Ports will develop Rosyth to provide agricultural specialist with a purpose-built facility that will become the company’s main agri-hub in Scotland, handling an extensive range of products.

Direct approach pays off for Davies Turner

Direct LCL services into Scotland have been the spur to Davies Turner’s growth in Scotland, says local branch manager, Darren McLaughlan. So much so that the extended high-bay warehouse at Cumbernauld in central Scotland opened last year is becoming full and the independent forwarder will soon be looking for more space in the area, he says. “Having our own LCL services

from China into Scotland massively speeds things up.


means we can unpack goods very quickly at our own warehouse and get them delivered to our customers,” he explains. It also means that any customs

issues can be dealt with on-site. Davies Turner operates its own ‘A’ (dry) bond at Cumbernauld. As well as seafreight containers,

direct road trailers also operate into Cumbernauld from the likes of France, Germany and Turkey. Along with Cumbernauld, also maintains

Davies Turner an airfreight office at Glasgow

airport. “Business in Scotland is very

good,” McLaughlan continues. “Having the warehouse means we can offer a one-stop solution, especially for imports from the Far East.” The facility is


BRC (British Retail Consortium)- accredited, which allows Davies Turner to work for all the main supermarket chains. Also, unlike many other parts

of the UK, there is a thriving export traffic out of Scotland including foodstuffs, automotive parts and electronics – although the days of the Silicon Glen may have gone, there is still a certain amount of contract manufacturing in Scotland, McLaughlan says. That said, imports do

somewhat outweigh exports for Davies Turner in Scotland, mainly to the large inbound volumes from the likes of China. Cumbernauld is an excellent

location, says McLaughlan, and future expansion would probably be in the same area.

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p r o gramme to increase

surfaced area, due for completion in mid-August and in time for the start of the peak traffic season. It will add space for an extra 1,000teu. New, carriers

taller straddle are being introduced

and a new ship-to-shore crane is under construction at Liebherr’s Killarney, Ireland site, expected to be operational in late September. Knox explains the thinking behind the investment: “It will

Issue 5 2018 - Freight Business Journal


Grangemouth is towards larger but less frequent containerships which, moreover tend to be concentrated towards the end of the week when Scotland’s export traffic tends to peak. Most ships are now around 7-800teu, double the size 7-8 years ago, though some are around 1,200teu. The challenge Grangemouth

help us increase traffic through the terminal, but it also helps

us cater for an increase in the size of ships.” The trend in

faces is to get these larger ships turned around in the same space of time as the older, smaller ones.





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