Isle Of Man / Ellan Vannin

Price concern as Mezeron ends island freight service

Concerns have been raised about the future of island freight prices as Mezeron Shipping ends its service between the Isle of Man and Liverpool.

The service, which began in October 2010, is due to run its final sailing on Friday 18 February.

The Steam Packet Company is now the only company operating a freight service between the island and the UK.

Local retailer Mike Horsthuis, from Robinsons, said: "The end of this competition rings alarm bells for me."

He added: "Having an alternative service always brings prices down, whatever sector you are in. If prices go up now, we will have absolutely no control. Having only one operator makes the future uncertain for all of us."

Steam Packet Chief Executive Mark Woodward said: "The User Agreement with government restricts annual fare increases to a maximum of Manx RPI. Passenger and freight fares for 2011 have been agreed with Government and will not be reviewed further until 2012."

He added: "Freight rates will not be reviewed further following the announcement by Mezeron that it will cease its daily freight service on the Douglas Liverpool route".

Mezeron will continue services between Glassan Dock and Belfast carrying general cargo and containers.

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