Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Port of Calais Reports Record High in Freight Truck Traffic

Figures Up Substantially from Last Year
Shipping News Feature
FRANCE – UK – One of the busiest ports linking France and the UK has reported a large upswing in freight vehicles passing through on its cross Channel routes. A renewed upsurge in haulage traffic has been confirmed in the first three months of 2017 and allowed the Port of Calais to realise the best quarter in its history through an absolute record for the month of March and the passage of 181,005 cargo units which used the Calais port facilities. The number of heavy goods vessels crossing through the French port grew by 11.2% compared to the first trimester of 2016, with 507,850 heavy goods vessels passing through the port.

As further encouragement for the beginning of the year, unaccompanied freight traffic also increased by 13% compared to 2016 with more than 1,000 additional trailers handled by the port services. This record for traffic in heavy goods vessels allows the Port of Calais to confirm its position as the leader in cross-Channel freight traffic, with a market share of 47.72%. Jean-Marc Puissesseau, President-Director of the Boulogne Calais Port, said:

“We are pleased with the very encouraging freight results which were obtained thanks to the efforts taken to ensure the security of all users and the fluidity of traffic. This increase further reinforces the need to adapt our infrastructure to these new volumes of traffic through Calais Port 2015.

“We hope that the renewed confidence of professionals will also manifest itself among tourists so that the Port of Calais continues to be the privileged point of passage for exchanges with Great Britain, as much as for freight as for passengers.”

Despite doom and gloom predictions on the effect of the Brexit decision on British-European trade the figures indicate that in fact trade is, at the moment certainly, booming. But most critical from the point of view of the Port of Calais must be the closure of the infamous ‘Jungle’ camp in October last year, from which thousands of migrant would daily try to access freight vehicles illegally so as to get into the UK. Such were the dangers - both financially and physically - to freight operators that many chose to use other, less hazardous ports.