Jobs Threat as P&O Plans to Close Three Ferry Routes; SHIPPING: Major Overhaul of North Sea Operations Planned
Byline: STEVE HAWKES
SHIPPING group P&O is shaking up its ferries business after splashing out pounds 150m on taking control of its joint venture with Stena Line.
More than 100 jobs could be under threat as a result of P&O's decision to focus on its more profitable cross-Channel routes.
P&O is buying the 40pc stake held by the Swedish-based Stena Line in the joint venture the two set up in 1998 to compete with the Channel Tunnel.
The group wants to axe the struggling Dover to Zeebrugge service run by the venture later this year. It also plans to close the two routes run by its separate P&O North Sea Ferries arm out of Felixstowe, to Zeebrugge and Rotterdam.
Around 50 jobs could go at both the Suffolk port and Zeebrugge in Belgium, but P&O hopes to minimise the impact on the crew manning the services.
Stena Line is hoping to buy three ships used on the Felixstowe route and P&O said other reductions would come through natural wastage or transfers at Dover. …