December 9 - Following a lengthy trial period, the Baltic Cargo Shuttle (BCS) is now fully established.

BCS has been developed by Germany's Arkon Shipping and Poland's Best Logistics using the container feeder shipping model to develop a new feeder service for heavy lift, project and breakbulk cargoes.

It deploys the multipurpose heavy lift ship, Lyra J between ports in the North and Baltic Seas.

HLPFI reported on the establishment of the new service on September 17 and its inauguration on October 7, with the loading of two Alstom generators (pictured). At the time we understood that the service would deploy two vessels.

"The trigger of the idea to bundle cargoes was the extra expenses which will occur due to the new Marpol regulations as from 1 January 2015 for the North Sea and Baltic,", said Arkon managing director Torsten Westphal.

The two companies say that BCS has multiple purposes for the trading area of the North Sea and Baltic. It offers a feeder service for the deep-sea traffic of the big shipping companies and will allow shippers and freight forwarders to reduce their costs considerably through short-term charters.

Andreas Haefner, managing director of Best, claims: "As the vessel is on stand-by in its trading area, the customer can benefit from bookings on short notice and a quick turnover. The routes will then be coordinated individually."