Just over two years have passed since the idea that Britain would leave the EU became a reality for everyone. However, we have all had enough time to let this reality sink in, and we’ve even heard several political talks of the many deals which can possibly be cut out of existence as we leave. In the wake of the political arguments, life on the ground has already began to change. And, even though we haven’t actually left the EU as yet, some sectors have already reached their point of no return.
Because of Brexit talks, several major disruptions have come to pass due to the uncertainty of the future. But, unlike other sectors, the haulage sector feels this pain the most, since we are unsure of the deal that will be made in our favour, or if one will even be made to start with. And, the majority of firms that deal with haulage are indeed unable to set prices and quotes or even give answers to basic customer questions for all periods after March of 2019. In addition, if the EU is left by Britain, this will have a high impact on literally every element of the haulage industry, from customs fees, taxes, HGV licence, trade routes and we are left in the dark, since both timescales and prices would be affected.
No Progress on Fright Concerns
In the earlier stages of this process, the Freight Transport Association (FTA) did, however, raise numerous concerns where the impacts of Brexit would indeed have an effect on the ability of Britain to participate in trades. The Freight Transport Association even proposed a viable list of solutions which ensured that the customs borders did work after Brexit had been implemented. It was referred to as Keep Britain Trading and it entailed a detailed solution which was geared at combating the new-found problems which came up as a result of Brexit. However, the deputy chief executive for the FTA stated that they made eight demands but not a single one was able to see any progress thus far.
In essence, the Brexit ministers didn’t take into consideration any of the solutions which were suggested by professionals within the haulage industry. As a result, the chief executive for the FTA, Mr Hookham, has stated that they are unable to keep their 43000 nationals, who are drivers for the industry, employed.
The thought of employment collapsing is indeed an important point of concern. The haulage industry faces a shortage in the significant number of qualified HGV drivers within the UK, and, even with the added 20000 drivers each year, they are still short by a whopping 50000 drivers. The haulage industry has been facing this type of challenge for more than roughly 5 years, and even though they have made every effort to attract new drivers, the industry still struggles with the strain. In the eyes of professionals in the haulage industry, Brexit will cause the loss of much more than just 43000 drivers and, this figure will subsequently be doubled as Britain faces a collapse within their business and trade infrastructure.
In addition, many industries are also stressing on the same point, however, with the introduction of Brexit, several overlooked flaws are now being exposed within our infrastructure, which leads to countless changes. Within the haulage sector, the mentioned issues are just the start of an even bigger disaster. A future after Brexit could very well mean packed-out roads with HGVs struggling to get across borders, and, the real possibility of hundreds of thousands of haulage drivers turning down not only work, but they may even have to retake their qualification exams again, since UK licenses will no longer be accepted by the EU.
Since the idea has come about, Brexit is already causing problems, and be mindful, these issues will only grow with time. We are putting high hopes that both the government and the FTA can work together and create a feasible deal to prevent the collapse of the economy while ensuring that Britain can still successfully trade.