More than 130 jobs will be affected when DFDS Seaways stops its crossings from Harwich to Denmark later this year.

The ferry company, which sails to Esbjerg, has been struggling with high costs, loss of passengers and freight being switched to road transport.

DFDS confirmed that the Harwich-Esbjerg route would close at the end of September.

“The majority of the route’s current freight volumes are expected to be transferred to the Esbjerg-Immingham freight route. Passenger services between Denmark and England will thus cease,” the company said.

“The consolidation of the two routes is part of DFDS’ strategy to adapt the  route network to the introduction of new sulphur emission rules on 1 January  2015.

“The new rules will considerably increase the cost level of the  Esbjerg-Harwich route. Moreover, freight volumes between Denmark and southern England have been declining in recent years.

“As a result, the financial performance of the Esbjerg-Harwich route will no longer be sustainable.”
The line said all of the ship’s crew would be offered new positions within DFDS.

The ferry Sirena Seaways currently deployed on the Esbjerg-Harwich, route will be deployed elsewhere in DFDS’ route network or chartered out.

More than half of the total revenue of DKK 190 million on the route last year was generated by passengers. The consolidation is not expected to have any material profit impact in 2014, the company said.