I visited the Port of Southampton to see how it is preparing for the opportunities of Brexit.
My visit began with a tour of the container port – which is the UK’s second largest container terminal and handled over one million containers last year – and I was later given a tour of the wider port facilities by ABP Southampton Regional Director Alastair Welch.
I was delighted to visit the Port of Southampton, which is one of Britain's greatest ports, to hear what people here think of the opportunities Brexit will bring.
Leaving the EU gives Britain the chance to agree ambitious new trade deals with other countries around the world, and ports like Southampton will play a key role in securing the future prosperity of our country.
We have always been at our best when we are outward looking, and our ports and shipping industry epitomise this key strength.
The Port of Southampton is the UK's largest export port and handles £40 billion of exports each year, 90 per cent of which is destined for countries outside the EU. The total trade handled by the Port is worth around £75 billion.
The Port's role has been strengthened by more than £280 million of investment over the past 5 years, including more than £50 million in brand new state-of-the-art vehicle export facilities.