4th October 2006
Harwich International Port is pleased to announce the signing of a contract extension with Stena Line, Europe’s largest ferry operator.
The new agreement will extend the relationship between the two companies until 2020, and shows Stena Line’s ongoing commitment to its North Sea services.
In addition to the contract extension, Stena Line has also announced a £70 million investment to upgrade its superferries, the Stena Hollandica and Stena Britannica. The vessels will be lengthened to 240 metres, and will be able to carry both freight and passengers. This will guarantee a passenger route to Holland, twice daily, for the next fourteen years. The ferries will become the largest passenger- and freight-carrying vessels in the world.
Chris Lewis, Chief Executive Officer of Hutchison Ports (UK) Limited, which owns Harwich International Port, said:
“We are extremely pleased to see Stena’s ongoing commitment to the Harwich – Hoek of Holland route, and look forward to working with Stena for many years to come. It is important that passengers can continue to travel from Harwich, and the contract extension and vessel lengthening programme will ensure that Harwich International Port is able to offer this service in the future.”
Pim de Lange, Managing Director for Stena Line BV, added:
“We strongly believe in this route as being an important gateway between the UK and the Continent, for both passengers and freight traffic. In this respect, we see Harwich International Port as an important partner, and are happy with the service they provide to us and to our customers”
Since the launch of the Sail and Drive campaign in 2003, Harwich International Port has worked closely with both Stena Line and Passenger Shipping Association (PSA) to highlight the advantages of sea travel to the near continent and focus on the strategic importance of Harwich as the only passenger port in East Anglia.
Commenting on the agreement Bill Gibbons, Director of the PSA said:
" I am delighted that the future of this historic route to the heart of Holland has been assured. Stena have shown their strong commitment by a massive investment in substantially increasing the capacity of these two vessels".
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Harwich International Port (HWH) is one of the UK’s leading multi-purpose freight and passenger ports with excellent road and rail links to the Midlands, London and the South East. It is ideally located for North Sea freight and passenger traffic to and from Scandinavia and the Benelux countries, offering first class ro-ro, ferry, container and bulk operations.
HWH is a member of the Hutchison Port Holdings (HPH) Group, a subsidiary of the multinational conglomerate Hutchison Whampoa Limited (HWL). HPH is the world's leading port investor, developer and operator, with interests in 21 countries throughout Asia, the Middle East, Africa, Europe and the Americas. Today, HPH operates a total of 251 berths in 43 ports, together with a number of transportation-related service companies. With industry-recognised core competence in the effective and efficient management and operation of ports, the HPH Group handled 51.8 million TEU in 2005.