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Scottish Highland ferry charges set to fall

  • 21 December 2012
  • By Ashleigh Wight

Fares for LGVs on ferries to the Western Isles in Scotland are set to be lower than expected as Transport Scotland (TS) intends to divert £2m of the revenue generated by reviewed car and passenger vehicle tariffs to subsidise LGV fares.

It hopes this will reduce the impact of the removal of the Road Equivalent Tariff (RET) for LGVs in February 2012, which offered lower ferry fares equivalent to the cost of travelling an equal distance by road. TS removed the RET for LGVs longer than six metres in length, leaving it in place for cars, passenger vehicles and small vans.

Its Ferries Plan, which sets out its intentions up until 2022, stated that it intends to invest the additional money generated to ensure that no LGV fare will rise by more than 10% in 2013. The average rise originally planned for 2013 was 34%.

Hector MacDonald, director at Lewis-based Hebrides Haulage, told CM that the loss of the RET has had a big impact on business as the firm uses the ferry crossing daily.

He said: “Operating costs have gone up and in these tough economic times you just have to pass that on to the customer.”

Scottish minister for transport and veterans, Keith Brown, said: “We want to see real change for the better for those who rely so heavily on our ferry links.”

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Article source: http://www.commercialmotor.com:80/latest-news/scottish-highland-ferry-charges-set-to-fall