MOROCCO – Dutch shipping operator WEC Lines is set to launch a groundbreaking direct route connecting Agadir in Morocco to the Port of Liverpool in the United Kingdom.

This initiative, commencing in January, aims to provide a swift and eco-friendly alternative for importing fresh produce, eliminating the need for overland trucking.

WEC Lines plans to utilize its existing fleet of ships, ranging between 850 and 1,000 TEUs (twenty-foot equivalent units).

The service, a first of its kind, strategically positions itself to capitalize on Morocco’s rise as a primary supplier of tomatoes to the UK, surpassing Spain.

Roger Megann, Managing Director of WEC Lines UK, highlighted the demand for an alternative that reduces carbon emissions and costs while maintaining efficiency.

The company plans to acquire around 50 additional refrigerated units to support this service, with further fleet expansion anticipated.

The move aligns with changing preferences in the industry, as revealed by a survey conducted by Peel Ports.

The survey, involving over 2,000 retail leaders, indicated that 76 percent preferred importing goods closer to their final destinations, choosing the port of entry based on shipping lines’ offerings.

Egypt leverages global trade role with strategic maritime developments

In a separate development, President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi has emphasized Egypt’s commitment to enhancing its global logistics and trade standing during a meeting with Rudolph Saada, CEO of the French international shipping company, “CMA CGM.”

The meeting, attended by Prime Minister Dr. Mustafa Madbouly, Minister of Transport Kamel al-Wazir, and other dignitaries, highlighted the pivotal role of “CMA CGM” in developing Egyptian ports.

Commending the strong Egyptian French relations, President Al-Sisi lauded the company’s efforts in improving the logistical and operational capacities of Egyptian ports.

This aligns with the state’s vision to transform these ports into trade and service hubs, contributing to Egypt’s emergence as a global logistics and trade center.

According to Ahmed Fahmy, spokesperson for the presidency of the Republic, Saada updated President Al-Sisi on the progress of ongoing projects in Egypt, emphasizing the company’s desire to expand cooperation.

Saada expressed appreciation for the cooperative atmosphere between the two sides and outlined the immense potential for collaborative projects in port and logistics development.

President Al-Sisi’s endorsement underscores Egypt’s commitment to fostering partnerships that bolster its economic infrastructure, positioning the country as a key player in global trade.

These strategic initiatives by Egypt and WEC Lines underscore the evolving landscape of global trade and logistics, emphasizing efficiency, sustainability, and adaptability in meeting market demands.

For all the latest fresh produce industry news updates from Africa, the Middle East, and the World, subscribe to our NEWSLETTER, follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn, like us on Facebook, and subscribe to our YouTube channel.