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Editor in chief: Angelo Scorza
23/03/20 10:10

DFDS Med: Italy-Turkey connections to continue on a regular basis

Ro-ro services (former UN Ro-Ro) will continue to call at Trieste and Bari, but they will transport only cargoes without drivers in compliance with anti-coronavirus measures

Maritime services operated by DFDS with Italy will continue, though in compliance with all the national and international regulations to contain the spread of coronavirus.

The news was announced by DFDS, the division of the Scandinavian group managing the activities taken over from the Turkish company UN Ro-Ro in the summer of 2018.

“We took all the necessary measures and our operations from and to Italy and France will continue, without human contacts”, the company announced in its official Twitter profile.

More precisely, the connections with Italy include the lines Pendik-Trieste (with periodical calls also at Patras, in Greece), Yalova-Trieste, Yalova-Bari, Maersin-Trieste, Ambarli-Trieste. As concerns France, the services operated by DFDS Med connect Marseille with Tunis and Yalova with Seté.

On all such lines, trailers can travel on a regular basis according to previous schedules but, in order to avoid human contact and the consequent possible risks of virus transmission, drivers cannot travel with their trucks.

However, anti-coronavirus measures will affect DFDS’s activities as the company already suspended several passenger connections between Denmark and Norway, and it disembarked over 600 seafarers, who will receive a direct subsidy by the Government of Copenhagen. Such solution allowed DFDS to avoid dismissals at home, but it will have repercussions on an international level, where the group might be forced to reduce the number of its employees.

As concerns freight services, which generate most of the company’s revenues, the volumes recorded in the first 2 months of 2020 are in line with expectations: recording a decrease compared to 2019 in the connections with the United Kingdom and an increase in the connections between Europe and Turkey.

In the past weeks, however, freight transport activities decreased, both due to the contraction in demand of consumer goods, which was affected by the blocking measures, and as a consequence of the reduction in industrial production.

However, the group is planning actions to mitigate the effects of changes in demand due to the coronavirus emergency, both for ferries and for logistic activities.