The government has announced plans to help ease supply chain problems by temporarily extending so-called ‘cabotage’ rights.
The proposals set out in a consultation launching on 14 October mean foreign operators that come into the country with goods can pick up and drop off goods an unlimited number of times for two weeks before they return home. Currently hauliers from the EU can only make up to two cabotage trips within seven days.
Subject to a one-week consultation, the temporary measures would come into force towards the end of this year for up to six months.
The relaxation would apply to all types of goods but is likely to be particularly beneficial to food supply chains and goods that come via ports.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said: “The long-term answer to the supply chain issues we’re currently experiencing must be developing a high-skill, high-wage economy here in the UK.
“Alongside a raft of other measures to help the road haulage industry, we’ve streamlined the testing process and announced thousands of skills bootcamps to train new drivers. These measures are working – we’ve been seeing up to 3 times more applications for HGV driving licences than normal as well as a deserved rise in salaries.
“The temporary changes we’re consulting on to cabotage rules will also make sure foreign hauliers in the UK can use their time effectively and get more goods moving in the supply chain at a time of high demand.”