Pan-European ferry operator P&O Ferries carried more freight between Dover and Calais in 2015 than in any previous year in its modern history.
The ferry company’s six ships on the English Channel transported 1.3 million units of freight during the 12 month period – a 22 per cent year-on-year increase, the company said.
Both the third and fourth quarters set new records for quarterly freight volumes, as P&O Ferries provided an additional vessel and additional sailings on the Dover to Calais route. Freight comprises around two thirds of the company’s business.
Janette Bell, Commercial Director of P&O Ferries, said: “We expect demand for cross-Channel transport to increase, driven by a rising population and the strength of the British economy. The vast majority of our freight customers are businesses transporting goods from continental Europe to Britain.”
“During a period when the media has been continuously writing about delays at the Channel tunnel, we have made it a priority to minimize dwell times for our customers by keeping a sixth ship in service on the route and maintaining a schedule of 58 sailings a day.”
The news follows a strong tourist performance by P&O Ferries during the peak summer season, with both July and August seeing the highest number of tourists travelling on the company’s Dover to Calais services since 2003.
P&O Ferries sails on nine major routes between Britain, France, Northern Ireland, the Republic of Ireland, Holland and Belgium. The company operates 20 vessels which carry more than 10 million passengers, 1.6 million cars and 2.2 million freight units every year.