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Isle of Man counts cost of ferry disruption in December

18th January, 2012

Isle of Man businesses are counting the cost of the recent ferry cancellations in December, according to the Government.

In the January sitting of Tynwald on Tuesday 17th, Minister for Economic Development, John Shimmin confirmed the Steam Packet company was forced to cancel 44 sailings during the severe weather.

Of the total sailings cancelled, 13 were caused by technical problems on the company's freight vessel, the Ben my Chree with the remainder being put down to exceptional weather conditions.

Mr Shimmin said "Some businesses are still feeling the effects.
Our manufacturing sector has been particularly affected. There are examples of raw materials being delayed and held at dockside with food deliveries given the priority. Good for the island's need to feed itself but not good in terms of our ability to be competitive as a high-value manufacturing centre."

Mr Shimmin said the Steam Packet company did the best it could in the difficult circumstances by "working closely with its customers to prioritise freight and adapting its timetable to suit prevailing weather conditions".

Manx Independent Carriers customers encountered many problems with delayed freight although we were able to prioritise many deliveries and keep everyone satisfied. Our own costs were considerable with a huge bill for overtime, vehicle and trailer hire.

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