Shipping and Ports Minister John Hayes has paid his first visit to the Port of Felixstowe, the UK's largest container port.
During his visit to the port, Mr Hayes visited the UK flagged Ever Lambent, the container vessel owned and operated by Evergreen Marine Corporation.
Whilst at the port, John Hayes said: "Felixstowe plays a crucial role, both as the gateway for goods coming into the UK and as the port where huge volumes of our exports leave these shores.
"Britain has long been a nautical powerhouse, with the maritime sector generating well over ￡8bn for the economy every year. Our ports have weathered the economic storm of recent years better than many parts of the economy and I fully appreciate the importance of Felixstowe in delivering long term growth."
Evergreen's Vice Group Chairman, Marcel Chang was delighted to welcome The Rt Hon John Hayes aboard the Ever Lambent,
"Evergreen is proud that a number of its ships fly the UK flag.? This vessel, the name of which means gleaming or glowing, is one and we hope the Minister sees it as a shining example of the high standards maintained by the British Merchant Marine. We thank him for his visit."
Commenting on the visit, Clemence Cheng, Chief Executive Officer of Hutchison Ports (UK) Limited, owner of the Port of Felixstowe, said:
"We welcome the visit of The Rt Hon John Hayes, Shipping and Transport Minister, to the Port of Felixstowe, the Port of Britain. It is an honour that the Minister has chosen Port of Felixstowe to board his first container vessel, which is owned and operated by our long term customer and partner, Evergreen. We are delighted to show the Minister our facilities, where more than 40% of UK container trade passes through our port, showing him how our workforce works seamlessly with our customers and other port users to ensure efficient movement of UK trade."
Notes to Editors:
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Port of Felixstowe (PFL) is the largest container port in the UK, and one of the largest in Europe. PFL is a member of the Hutchison Port Holdings (HPH) Group. Hutchison Port Holdings (HPH), a subsidiary of the multinational conglomerate Hutchison Whampoa Limited (HWL), is the world's leading port investor, developer and operator.? The HPH network of port operations comprises 319 berths in 52 ports, spanning 26 countries throughout Asia, the Middle East, Africa, Europe, the Americas and Australasia. Over the years, HPH has expanded internationally into other logistics and transportation-related businesses. These include cruise ship terminals, airport operations, distribution centres, rail services, and ship repair facilities.? In 2013, the HPH port network handled a combined throughput of 78.3 million TEU worldwide.