BOSSES at a key North-East shipping hub have visited Asia in a bid to position the region as the leading centre for UK logistics.

PD Ports chief executive David Robinson and business development director Geoff Lippitt have flown out to Asia to meet with customers and partners to highlight how UK logistics are changing and the impact this will have on trade with Asia.

The eight day tour, which includes three days in Japan and five days in Hong Kong, is the first in a series of visits planned to Asia.

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The visits will also highlight infrastructure investments PD Ports has made over the last two years, including £16.7m invested to upgrade the container handling facilities at Teesport to service the growing volume container goods coming through the port, which is up 70 per cent in five years.

Jonathan Gamblin, international trade adviser at UK Trade and Investment helped organise the visit.

He said: “UKTI hopes the success of companies such as PD Ports will help inspire others to take up the export for growth challenge and this week we’re hosting a series of events across the region as part of national Export Week to help companies find out how they can export and access the wide range of support that is available.”

Mr Robinson said: “Asia is the start of PD Ports’ supply chain for many imports and understanding trends is very important, as is awareness of any associated export opportunities.

“Teesport is well placed to make a material difference to supply chain markets and we are looking to build on our existing platform to position the North East, and in particular the Tees Valley, as a leading centre for UK logistics.”