The small island nation of Malta has become the latest addition to Europa Road’s product range with the announcement of a new weekly service between its capital Valletta, and Europa’s £30m 1hub facility in Dartford, the UK’s largest European groupage hub.
Malta is the second farthest destination on Europa Road’s current network and will provide another vital link for its imports and exports to power its small, yet burgeoning economy.
Malta’s population of around 432,000, which swells to over 1 million during the tourist season, is heavily reliant on imported goods, producing just 20% of the food it consumes on the island itself. Europa Operations Director, Dan Cook said the UK is one of the leading sources of supply to Malta, which imports the majority of its goods, therefore, this new route is an opportunity for Europa to open the door to existing customers who ship to Malta and exploit another new customer base for this interesting market.
“It’s another string to our bow and broadens the range of products we’re able to offer our customers in house. There are only a handful of providers serving Malta, and many of them are specialised, doing nothing else, so we’re looking to provide our customers with more choice and the backing of our experienced and solutions-focused roading team, without sourcing solutions from outside of our own product range.”
Europa Road has partnered with one of Malta’s largest trailer and LCL operators, Parnis England Trucking, with whom the management from both companies have known each other for many years, in order to create the new service. Dan said it is expected to yield around 200 export collections per week and 50 import deliveries.
According to the European Commission, Malta experienced the highest economic growth out of the entire European Union at 6% in 2017. While tourism remains Malta’s primary source of income, its service industry is booming with IT and particularly Blockchain becoming a big earner for the maritime nation. Future developments to its roading and public transport infrastructure are also in the pipeline, meaning project freight business could look to grow in time.
Dan said, “We see it as an opportunity to grow and diversify our offering. While Malta is one of the smallest destinations we service, it punches well above its weight and due to its strategic position remains an important trading post within Europe.”