Hazzard meets with Warrenpoint Harbour as Brexit clouds gather
South Down MP Chris Hazzard met Warrenpoint Harbour this week to discuss protecting the continued growth of one of Ireland's most important ports, as the economic dangers of Brexit loom.
Speaking following the positive meeting, the Sinn Féin MP said:
“I want to thank Peter Conway and his team for their warm hospitality and a very productive discussion on the continued growth of the harbour in recent years.
“The port has a very strong reputation, and continues to perform, as a recent agreement to extend the Seatruck Ferries contract by 10 years proves.
"As the harbour is located on Carlingford Lough between Co Down and Co Louth, however, it faces huge unknowns as the Brexit catastrophe unfolds.
“The wider benefit of a growing Warrenpoint Harbour to the local South Down economy is clear. More importantly, it now provides optimism as the community faces the economic impact of Brexit.
"A strong harbour such as this is ideally situated to meet the emerging needs and challenges of our economy.
"In tandem with a growing business reputation and its geographic location, the harbour finds itself at the centre of growing trade between the island of Ireland and Britain.
“This means despite all the talk of 'soft borders’ and ‘frictionless trade’, the harbour and its customers increasingly fear the inevitable custom checks, border controls and tariffs."
Mr Hazzard added:
“Brexit undoubtedly has the potential to unravel much of the economic growth that has been secured in recent years, and Warrenpoint Harbour know this.
"I will be meeting with Brexit officials in London & Brussels to ensure that the very unique and specific needs of Warrenpoint Harbour are known.”