EU offers six-month no-deal 'lifeline' to hauliers on UK ECMT permits

Europe’s ‘no-deal’ contingency planning has extended a lifeline to anxious hauliers of a six-month delay on the need for driver permits, in exchange for UK reciprocity.

The olive branch comes just a day after Europe allocated 1,600 European Conference of Ministers of Transport driver permits (ECMT) to the UK, leaving more than 8,000 truckers uncertain how they would move goods around a post-Brexit EU.

MD of policy and public affairs at the Road Haulage Association (RHA) Rod McKenzie welcomed the announcement.

He said: “Good news as [there are] not enough permits. But it needs the UK to reciprocate.”

Acknowledging haulier anxieties, the EC said it was “evident” that relying solely on the ECMT quota would lead to severe disruption in the event of a no-deal, and added: “It does not constitute an adequate solution to ensure basic road freight connectivity immediately after the transition, with carriage of goods by road between the UK and member states almost entirely in the hands of haulage operators.

“The loss of their right to provide road freight transport between the UK and the union would therefore result in serious disruptions, including in respect of public order.”

It announced it would be willing to waive the need for ECMT permits for UK hauliers, providing this conformed with relevant EU transport law and the UK extended the same rights to EU operators.

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Source: The Loadstar

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