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CILT warns inaction on Brexit ‘not an option’

13 August 2018

Chief executive Kevin Richardson attended a Brexit round table last week, hosted by the Secretary of State for Transport Chris Grayling.

The Government told the meeting ‘liberalised access’ in trade and transport was being requested and offered by the UK.

But plans were being made for scenarios where trade and transport barriers would be in place.

Richardson said: “All must now play their part; inaction is not an option, and everyone should collaborate on creating the most effective and efficient solutions for our future outside the EU, as a significant global player.”

The meeting learned that a number of truck management plans were underway, focusing on the Kent corridor to accommodate queues if required and necessary because of restrictions beyond UK border points. Such queues would predominantly impact EU hauliers as well as those EU countries exporting to the UK. The Government believes 'that such issues should promote reasonable negotiations in the best interest of the European neighbourhood'.

Plans already underway include:

  • Vehicle management planning within the UK for export flows.
  • Permit systems.
  • International Driving Licences.
  • Bilateral agreements.
  • European Conference of Ministers of Transport (ECMT) and Trailer Registration systems.

It is not planned that additional checks at the border will be conducted.

During the meeting, CILT requested that the Government provides clarity on plans and timelines to assist businesses in their contingency planning; as well as to conduct research and assess logistics capacity against the demands of the nation under different scenarios, so that major gaps, risks and the implications for private and public sector investment can be determined. This should include assessments on access to non-UK EU labour on which the profession is heavily dependent.

Richardson said: “One area we have has been advocating is the importance of Authorised Economic Operator (AEO) accreditation as a means of supporting international supply chains in customs applications and processing.”

A recent survey conducted by the CBI finds that only 12% of businesses surveyed have put together a contingency plan for a ‘no deal’ scenario. Some 49% said they haven’t yet, but plan to. 

Businesses reappraising their levels of stock and/or deployment of inventory to cover Brexit risks may find themselves requiring either extra warehouse space or facilities in new locations, says Steve Purvis, operations director, Bis Henderson Space.

Bis Henderson Space offers a consultancy service designed to match up storage requirements with existing spare space in the UK supply chain.