Rail freight

18.05.20

£35m to protect vital freight routes

Crucial freight routes out of, into and around the UK will continue to operate thanks to multi-million-pound government scheme to help ensure critical goods, such as food and medical supplies, can move freely.

The government has signed agreements with 6 operators to safeguard freight capacity to prevent disruption to the movement of goods.

The decision has been made to protect 16 of the most imperative routes covering the Channel, the Short Strait, the North Sea and routes between Great Britain and Northern Ireland which were formerly at risk of closure due to a drop in demand as a result of the Covid-19 outbreak.

They will now be designated as Public Service Obligation routes for a period of up to 9 weeks.

Grant Shapps, Transport Secretary, said following the announcement: “From the very beginning of the outbreak, we have committed to do whatever it takes to minimise the disruption caused by COVID-19.

By taking this action, we have helped protect the movement of goods and services in and out of the UK, safeguarding the flow of supplies across the Union.”

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