THE firm hoping to reinstate a ferry link between Rosyth and Europe has confirmed plans are "continuously progressing".

Douglas Chapman MP says the "main barriers" the project now faces are issues around border force and control but that help from the UK Government could alleviate these costs.

Ferries stopped sailing between Rosyth and Zeebrugge five years ago and the SNP politician has led the campaign for their return.

Last summer, DFDS and Ptarmigan Shipping signed an agreement “to further investigate the possibility” of re-opening the route with a target date of early 2023 for freight.

Mr Chapman says he is now working to gain support from Westminster.

He told the Press: I have written a letter to Lord Offord, the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Scotland and Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Exports, to highlight my pursuit of a successful outcome to re-establish a direct ferry service between Rosyth and Zeebrugge.

"I informed Lord Offord that the main barriers we now face centre around Border force / Border control issues which would add significantly to the initial costs of setting up this service.

"I would hope that we could reach an accommodation with the UK Government on alleviating these costs for such a significant project in order for it to be successful and sustainable.

"I am keen to meet with Lord Offord and relevant stakeholders in the near future to find a way through this current impasse.

"I have also been in touch with the Secretary of State for Scotland, Alister Jack, who has signalled his willingness to assist on this issue."

Dunfermline Press: Dunfermline and West Fife MP Douglas Chapman has long campaigned for the return of the Rosyth Euro ferry.Dunfermline and West Fife MP Douglas Chapman has long campaigned for the return of the Rosyth Euro ferry. (Image: -)

In October Mr Chapman travelled to Copenhagen for talks with the two companies, and returned in a "very positive" mood after declaring "we’ve never been closer to delivering a reliable, cost-effective direct maritime link from the heart of Scotland and into the heart of Europe".

In April he asked The First Minister Humza Yousaf for "practical support" in aiding the return of the route.

DFDS says it is "still looking for opportunities" and the possibility of a ferry between Rosyth and continental Europe.

A spokesperson said: "We are still looking for opportunities to grow our network including investigating the possibility of a new ferry route between Rosyth and Continental Europe.

"We are continuously progressing with the project and will revert in due time."