The Humber’s attraction for cargo imports has been further underlined with the addition of a new route from Lithuania.

Immingham Container Terminal now welcomes a weekly service from Klaipeda, operated by Unifeeder, DP World’s shipping line.

Vessels leave the Baltic port on a Friday, arriving on a Monday, crossing the North Sea after navigating the Kiel Canal through northern Germany. The 158m vessel, Elbspring, made the maiden voyage this month.

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Simon Bird, Humber regional director for Associated British Ports, said: “We’re delighted Unifeeder has launched this new route. This is great for the market, again showing the proximity of Immingham to the European markets and the need for customers to bring their goods in through faster and more direct routes.”

Substantial investment in the terminal by ABP has enhanced the port’s credentials for cargo destined for the North and Midlands., with state-of-the-art facilities supporting value-added services. Using Immingham vastly reduces land miles that laden and empty containers have to travel over southern ports too, with the past five years seeing volumes increase by 40 per cent.

Martin Gaard Christiansen, European chief executive at Unifeeder, said: “We’re delighted to bring the benefits of a faster transit time between Klaipeda and Immingham directly to our customers. In close cooperation with Immingham Container Terminal, Unifeeder offers a reliable, competitive, and environmentally friendly connection between the important markets of the Baltics and the UK.”

Lithuania has a strong manufacturing base in plastics, with the automotive and aviation industries strongly supported.

It comes ahead of a major new terminal development with Stena Line at the port, with the proposal set to enter the planning process imminently. A new rail freight service was also established for Port of Immingham late last year to support the growth and green credentials, linking directly with Iport at Doncaster, a hub at the heart of the national network.

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