DFDS Sees Little Effect from Brexit So Far

Photo: DFDS Seaways

Posted by Eric Haun

Danish based ferry and logistics operator DFDS has many
activities and 2,200 employees in the U.K., placing it at the
heart of the ongoing "Brexit" process following the U.K.'s vote
to leave the EU and making the firm an early indicator of changes
in trade and passenger movements.

In a post on its website, the Danish based firm addressed
Brexit's immediate and long-term impact, stating that it has seen
little to no effect on trade so far.

"We also discuss our experiences and expectations from the Brexit
situation with customers. In general, our joint view is that so
far, we have seen no or very limited effect of Brexit on trade.
Neither do we foresee any major decline of trade in the near
future. Recently, the Bank of England adjusted their growth
expectations upwards to 2 percent in 2017, and our experience is
that when the economy grows then freight volumes will also grow,"
said Eddie Green, Executive Vice President and Head of DFDS'
logistics division.

Some effects of course will not be immediate. Any changes to
trade tariffs, for example, will not take effect for at least two
years or longer, and the same goes for changes to conditions for
foreign nationals working in the U.K. and the EU, DFDS noted.

"There are also still some uncertainties as to when a Brexit will
actually occur. Although the British Prime Minister has set a
deadline of March 31, 2017 to invoke Article 50 and commence
Brexit negotiations, it is not expected that the U.K. will leave
the EU for at least two years and negotiations on the finer
details could take longer. In addition to this, we support the
view that in reality, everyone is benefitting from trade, and
therefore we believe that all political groups and nations will
share an interest in protecting and stimulating trade," Green
said.

So far, the major change caused by the Brexit vote has been a
depreciation of the British pound, which the company said has
impacted some trade flows, but not overall volumes. According to
DFDS, the impact has been more noticeable on the passenger side
as it has become more expensive for U.K. citizens to travel
abroad while London has seen a rise in tourists on shopping
sprees.

Mar 2, 2017

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