FTA members Brexit wish lists include single market access and hiring non-UK drivers

EU referendum, Microlise Conference.

Brexit priorities for the Freight Transport Association’s (FTA) international haulage members include tariff-free access to the single market and the ability to hire non-UK drivers, according to a new survey. 

And, while 64% view the short-term prospects for their businesses with pessimism, only 50% think Britain’s exit from the European Union will make things worse in the long term.  

FTA’s international haulage members were polled on a number of issues and many of those who responded agreed it was too early to make a precise judgement until the new deal has been agreed. The top three priorities were continued full access to the single market, tariff-free access for goods and preservation of access to the single market for services. 

Members are also keen are keen to retain the ability to hire non-UK drivers, who would have the right to work in both the UK and in the single market.  

Chris Yarsley, FTA’s EU affairs manager, said: “With the UK’s current driver shortage, it’s no surprise that labour mobility issues are at the forefront of international transport businesses minds and this is certainly something FTA will be pressing the Government to prioritise this when the negotiations begin. 

“These results reflect the fact that companies prefer certainty to the unknown, which is where we find ourselves at the moment. However, FTA and its members are ready to face the challenge head-on and engage with Government to obtain the best possible deal so that UK operators can continue to deliver the goods, no matter where they are.” 

FTA has identified the top 10 issues for the logistics industry as the country prepares to leave the European Union. These are the ones that FTA will be closely monitoring and influencing over the coming months to protect the interests of its members.  

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  • Busterrabbit - 12/07/2016 11:19

    I don't understand why there is an HGV driver shortage in the UK, unless of course it's the appalling road network and poor pay? Train drivers earn upwards of £30k doing what could probably easily done autonomously, and get a decent pension. Due to a serious RTC, involving a British registered HGV with an east European driver I'm not sure a race to the bottom is the way to go. My experience (apparently not uncommon) involved a driver with two licences in different names; to fool the Tacho and get around driving hours, and the use of drugs to keep the guy awake. His first stance was "no English" and to try and drive off, luckily witness prevented this.

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  • Rosco - 12/07/2016 14:49

    No one has yet to my satisfaction defined what access to the single market is. Actually just being able to sell goods or services in the "EU" is access to the single market. One look at the almost certainly non EU produced mobile phone in your pocket shows that this is not a problem, just a phrase the EU uses. For many UK hauliers I expect they will welcome the inability of EU registered vehicles travelling into the UK each week, with a full tank of EU fuel doing UK trunking work on the cheap. And to the comment from Busterrabbit. The safety issue of legal EU drivers using UK registered vehicles, is a serious concern, the number of accidents that result from this is a significant problem, and shows a negative impact of freedom of movement. Why we never had a licensing system whereby you need a UK HGV licence to drive for a UK haulier I don't know, perhaps because of EU law. I wouldn't allow a european electrician to work in my house if they didn't have the correct UK accreditation, why as a haulier would I employ a left hand drive specialist for UK work, knowing that it would increase the accident rate, I can only speculate that the wage saving is worth it.

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