The HumberPort port of Hull
Nick Hill

HumberPort partners call the Humber “logical choice” for international trade

According to a delegation representing the HumberPort partnership, the Humber is the “logical choice” for bringing goods into the north of Britain and critical to the success of the Northern powerhouse.

The Humber, the UK’s busiest ports complex, has several strategic advantages for international trade, including access within four hours drive time to 75% of the UK’s manufacturing facilities and 40 million people.

Furthermore, the HumberPort partnership is going through a revitalisation to capitalize on the momentum achieved by the branding of the Humber as the UK’s Energy Estuary; major investment into the Humber by big players such as Siemens; and the opportunity presented by the Northern Powerhouse concept.

As well as the infrastructure investment for the Siemens wind turbine blade factory and associated facilities in Hull, there is also a £450m Able Marine Energy Park being developed on the south bank of the Humber.

The Humber’s capabilities to handle international trade will be promoted in a seminar entitled “HumberPort: Opening the door to the Northern powerhouse” during an upcoming event at the NEC in Birmingham.

The seminar will feature presentations by Professor Amar Ramudhin, Director of the Logistics Institute at the University of Hull; Peter Aarosin, Chief Executive of logistics business Danbrit and ports operator RMS Group; John Fitzgerald, Associated British Ports’ Humber Director; and Lord Haskins, Chair of the Humber Local Enterprise Partnership.

Prof Ramudhin said: “The Humber is the logical choice for shippers. Use of the HumberPort complex minimises transportation time and distance to the heart of the UK’s logistics industry, builds greater resilience in their supply chains, and improves their distribution networks.

“We have a multi-purpose ports system within a unique estuary. Our message is ‘come to the Humber – whatever your type of freight, we have a port for you’.

“It’s also an open gateway to the Northern powerhouse. With the Humber on the east coast and Liverpool on the west, it creates a golden corridor of trade that is vital to growth of the North and better serves the growing trend of manufacturing and distribution centres moving further north. This will re-balance the UK economy, reduce congestion and drive down logistics costs.”

The delegation believes it made business sense for shippers to choose the Humber as their entry point into the UK, to reduce transport time and costs. Mr Aarosin cited the example of goods entering through Southampton destined for a distribution centre in Leeds, involving a round trip of 500 miles, as opposed to 120 miles via the Humber ports.

Mr Aarosin added: “We have the largest available land banks of any port or estuary in the UK and excellent transport links, so there is a major opportunity for manufacturers and distributors to build their distribution centres on the banks of the Humber and also for the Humber to attract added-value industries.”

Prof Ramudhin also commented on the Humber being a critical to the growth of the Northern economy, he said: “with the Humber on the east coast and Liverpool on the west, you have end-to-end connectivity, with trade coming in from one way or the other and logistics parks in the middle, clustered around West Yorkshire.

“You could also foresee this corridor being used as an integrated multimodal route for freight coming in from the west and destined to the north of Europe and vice versa, when the right logistics infrastructure and services are in place.

“The Humber is a winning situation for shippers and logistics service providers. We offer space to invest and grow, excellent infrastructure, skilled people and, most importantly, great connectivity to markets in the UK, Europe and beyond.”

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