There are concerns that Stena Line may stop its Dún Laoghaire Harbour services altogether – a decision that could cost the marine tourism firm around €7 million a year.
The ferry operator has already said that it will not run its high-speed service between the south Dublin town and Holyhead, Wales, this Christmas period because of "commercial and operational reasons."
Since then, worries have surfaced that this is just the first part of a total severance between the two companies, of which neither has commented on the negotiation process, though it is ostensibly not progressing with any degree of smoothness.
Stena Line's withdrawal would be a big knock to the Dún Laoghaire Harbour Company, and Irish tourism generally: sources estimate that Stena’s business is worth €7 million a year to the firm, which lost €890,000 in 2013.
The ferry company also operates services to Holyhead from Dublin Port. It has been posited that this route could absorb any traffic from Dún Laoghaire.