A total of 33 road haulage associations from around Europe have signed an open letter calling on all parties to agree on a Brexit deal. Among them are the Road Haulage Association and Logistics UK.
The open letter, addressed to the EU’s chief negotiator Michel Barnier, the UK’s chief negotiator David Frost and Prime Minister Boris Johnson, highlighted the volume of truck traffic travelling between the EU and the UK – more than 2.3 million trucks each year.
As the open letter explains: “These vehicles are the lifeblood of our interconnected economies, supporting all sectors and industries by bringing raw materials, spare parts, supermarket supplies and finished products to their users and end consumers.”
It continues: “As such, road transport is a trade enabler.”
It points out that not having an EU-UK agreement in place by the end of the transition period is simply not an option for the trucking industry. It urges all parties to find a compromise on the issue of road haulage, something the letter describes as being “achievable and indispensable”.
The letter warns against the reintroduction of haulage permits and quota systems that “were never intended to cover volumes of trade as high as those currently taking place between the EU and the UK”.
Unless a solution is found, according to the open letter, the consequences will be hard-felt. It states that we “would face a disheartening choice between a patchwork of fragmented national arrangements, and a world where the shortage of transport capacity on EU-UK routes is endorsed as official policy (quota of permits). Either option would be to everyone’s loss.”
It concludes that “time is of the essence” and that negotiators need to “focus on their shared objectives” to find a solution that is “economically sensible and allows the road transport industry to play its role as an essential trade enabler across all sectors of the economy”.