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Parliamentary questions
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8 July 2014
Question for written answer E-005677-14
to the Commission
Rule 130
Sajjad Karim (ECR)

 Subject:  Monopoly position of Isle of Man ferry services
 Answer in writing 

A ferry company wishes to establish a new route between the port of Workington, in my UK constituency, and Ramsey on the Isle of Man. However, all attempts to establish this new ferry route are currently being blocked by the Manx Government.

The Isle of Man is currently only served by one ferry company, which has an agreement with the Manx Government. This monopoly agreement has been extended to 2020 with no competitive tendering process.

Under the British Act of Accession to the EU, the Isle of Man benefits from free access to the European market but is equally bound to adhere to EU rules on competition.

Can the Commission state whether the non-existence of competition in the shipping market (and the lack of a competitive tendering process for new contracts) means that the Isle of Man is in breach of the British Act of Accession to the EU? What actions can be taken to ensure that the Manx Government takes the necessary steps to comply with the agreement and ensure that its ports are opened up to free trade?

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