Plans for a new ferry service to the Netherlands from the Firth of Forth are “quite far along”, according to the head of the company proposing the new route.
David Kellas, director at TEC Offshore who hope to setup a passenger and freight service between Rosyth and Eemshaven, near Groningen, said he believes the demand for the service does exist, despite previous failures.
It comes only a year after the DFDS-run freight route from Scotland to Zeebrugge was finally terminated.
Mr Kellas said that there are still “major pieces of the jigsaw” still to conclude before the service is launched.
The Scotsman understands that TEC Offshore is in discussions with the Scottish Government over helping to secure a £35-40 million loan for the ferries that could be used by the company on the route, with the scheme described by one well-placed source as not “feeling too realistic”.
This measure is necessary due to TEC Offshore having no assets with which to secure the loan itself.
Mr Kellas said contracts have been signed for the ships, but did not say which company would supply them
He would also not be drawn on the nature of the discussions between his company and the Scottish Government.
Mr Kellas said: “The route we are looking at is over to Rosyth from Eemshaven and it is approximately the same distance as the route to Zeebrugge was.
“Exact funding is not from the Scottish Government. It would be nice if they give us a wedge of cash, but that is not the direction per say.
“If you didn’t have the funding you couldn’t do the project.”
The ferry service will include one ship sailing in either direction each day, with the sailing time likely to be around 20 to 22 hours dependent on the weather. . . . .
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