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UK ports launch a ten-point plan to boost investments post-Brexit

5th March 2019
UK ports launch a ten-point plan to boost investments post-Brexit

The UK Major Ports Group (UKMPG) and the British Ports Association have developed a plan with reforms that can transform the ports industry, after the UK leaves the EU.

The plan lists a number of changes to planning law and other legislation, aiming to allow ports to invest quicker and increase the capability of the UK to trade with the world. Many of the reforms on the list will boost not only the UK ports but the coastal communities around them.

No-deal Brexit could disrupt business

The importance of the UK’s ports for business has recently been in the spotlight, as the potential event of a no-deal Brexit could disrupt industry. As recently as January, port operators and service providers in the UK were preparing for a shift of European cargo from direct import-export routes via Dover to other ports around the country. With 95% of the UK’s trade in goods passing through its ports, this plan is something UKMPG describe as “essential”.

“In the post-Brexit world, trade needs to be hard-wired into all our policy-making,” said Tim Morris, chief executive of UKMPG. “Our ports are the gateway to UK trade, and it is imperative that we have the right framework in place to allow them to invest in the future and make the UK as attractive for international trade as possible,” he added.

The proposals include increasing the scope of Permitted Development Rights, special consideration applied to coastal communities in the National Planning Policy Framework and the development of pro-trade and pro-investment port zones.

UKMPG’s nine members own and operate over forty ports between them, accounting for 75% of the UK’s seaborne trade.


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