The UK government is to provide £17 million in funding to safeguard Northern Ireland-Great Britain ferry routes during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The move has been welcomed by the Freight Transport Association (FTA). Seamus Leheny, Policy Manager for Northern Ireland at FTA, comments: “The government’s decision to provide financial support to safeguard key GB-NI ferry routes is key to securing the future of sea freight on the Irish Sea, and provides welcome reassurance for GB-NI supply chains, so that they can remain fully functional throughout the Covid-19 outbreak. Ferries are an essential tool in making sure supplies of critical goods keep moving but like many other sectors, have been hit hard by the outbreak. Today’s recognition of the crucial importance of sea freight to the NI and GB economies cannot be underestimated and the desperately needed funding will reinforce these key ferry routes.
“At FTA we are also pleased to see the government subsequently announced a broader package of support measures for routes between the UK and mainland Europe to help protect the nation’s supply chains during this pandemic.”