Direct Ferry link to Europe can still Happen but it Requires Political Will says Hanvey
Reacting to the news that plans to launch a new Scotland to mainland Europe ferry service have been put on hold by commercial ferry operator DFDS Alba Party Westminster Leader Neale Hanvey MP has re-issued his call on the Scottish Government Transport Minister Fiona Hyslop MSP to convene a summit of all interested parties to “kick start” the process. The Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath MP says that “time is running out to make this a reality” and that it is now “vital that the Transport Minister intervenes as a matter of urgency to convene a summit of all interested parties.”
A summit would bring together the Scottish Government, Fife Council, Fife Chamber of Commerce and Enterprise and the UK Government, as well as local MSPs and MPs. Commercial companies with an interest in running the service to cover both freight and passenger services would also be invited to take part.
In a statement, Neale Hanvey MP said:
“This is disappointing news and hugely frustrating for all of those who have worked so hard to see the ferry link re-instated. However I remain convinced that a direct ferry link from Rosyth to mainland Europe is both desirable and achievable. It is still a goal worth striving for and I believe it can still happen if the political will exists to make it so.
“We need a political initiative to ‘kick start’ the process. Time is running out if this is to become a reality. It is now vital that the Transport Minister intervenes as a matter of urgency to convene a summit of all interested parties.
“I wrote earlier this month to the Transport Minister urging her to use her position to breath new life into these plans by convening a Summit of all of the interested parties with the aim of discussing the commercial opportunities of re-establishing both freight traffic and passenger journeys between Rosyth and the mainland of Europe.
“There is overwhelming public support and a strong business case all that is lacking is the political will and some pump prime funding from the Scottish and UK governments to get it up and running. The Scottish Government subsidises every other form of public transport including ferries for our island communities as well as trains, buses, and air travel.
“It is high time the Scottish Government showed some leadership in this regard and convened a summit of all the interested parties so that progress can finally be made.”