Liverpool in Motorways of the Sea fast lane

Posted 7th May 2015
6 minutes read
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City Region to host international logistics conference which will shape EU policy

Liverpool is to host a major international conference concerning logistics infrastructure and the European Commission’s £1+billion Motorways of the Sea initiative. Motorways of the Sea is designed to streamline and promote new intermodal maritime-based logistics chains across Europe.

The city was selected to host the event thanks to both its historic prominence as one of the world’s great ports, plus the opportunities being opened up by the current £1billion Superport-related   investments in logistics facilities across the city region.

The free-to-attend conference is being held at No 1 Mann Island on May 20 and 21, and takes place during UKTI’s Export Week. It will attract hundreds of delegates from ports and shipping bodies across Europe, Commission policy makers, plus UK businesses and academics keen to get the latest information on EU funding and policy developments relating to the Motorways of the Sea programme, plus forge new international links.

The keynote addresses will include former Deputy Prime Minister and Ship’s Steward, Lord Prescott. Technical sessions will showcase learning and solutions from 20 EU-funded projects, and highlight key issues to be addressed via future EU policy and funding.  The conference will be moderated by former North West MEP and European Parliament Transport Committee chair Brian Simpson, who is now the Motorways of the Sea project coordinator.

To attend the free event, delegates should register at

In advance of the event, on the afternoon of 19 May, 30-minute surgery sessions are available with EU Commission and UK Department of Transport officials in order to discuss potential projects. Please contact to arrange.

Lord Prescott said: “Like me, Liverpool has the sea in its blood and I am very pleased to be involved in this event. I applaud the city’s renaissance linked to this vitally important sector, and look forward to, sharing my own vision for enhanced multimodal connectivity along the corridor from Liverpool-Hull as critical gateways to markets in Ireland, Northern Europe and beyond, with the economic benefits this will bring.”

Liverpool City Region Local Enterprise Partnership executive director Mark Basnett said: “This conference marks a key point in the maturation of the City Region’s renewed standing in the international logistics sector and as a core port on the European network.

“Do not be mistaken that this event is just a talking shop: it has real purpose, not least during UK Export Week. The chance to get the latest information and influence policy and funding decisions, combined with the opportunity for a face-to face session with key officials, makes this is a must-attend event for anyone interested in trying to secure funding from the Motorways of the Sea and wider Connecting Europe Facility programmes.

“It is also the perfect opportunity to showcase the cluster of multi-modal assets that is Superport Liverpool to a diverse international audience, from Peel Ports’ £300 million investment in the new Liverpool 2 deep water container port, to the new Mersey Crossing in Halton and potential intermodal rail freight interchange on the former Parkside Colliery in St. Helens.”

EU Commission official responsible for the Motorways of the Sea initiative José Anselmo commented: “DG MOVE is delighted to hold this important event in Liverpool, given its historic status as a leading world port, plus the scale of ambition to renew and enhance its infrastructure both within the port and across the wider hinterland.

“The presentations by previous projects from across the EU provide very valuable learning, while we also use events like this to listen very closely to the needs of businesses and agencies involved in the maritime and logistics industries, and inform future policy and funding. So if you have a project idea or opinion about key issues then please use this opportunity to bring these to our attention.”

The conference is further evidence of the growing stature of Liverpool in the fiercely competitive logistics market as a key driver of international trade. In early June, the city will also host the International Federation of Warehousing Logistics Association’s Annual Convention which is preceded by the Logistics Leaders Network Lunch on May 26.