Government to extend cabotage rights
Added: 01 November 2021
More HGV deliveries could be made with temporary changes to ‘cabotage’ according to the Government. A 1-week consultation was opened in October to allow foreign operators that come into the country laden with goods to pick up and drop off goods an unlimited number of times for 2 weeks before they return home. Currently hauliers from the EU can only make up to 2 cabotage trips within 7 days.
The temporary measure is expected to be in place for up to 6 months to help improve supply chains.
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, by ensuring lorries from abroad coming into the UK are used more efficiently, helping to tackle the supply chain pressures brought on by the pandemic, driver shortages, and Brexit.
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.”
Help for the swine industry
The government also announced a package of measures to support the pig industry which is facing unprecedented pressure due to a shortage of abattoir workers. Farmers are housing a backlog of pigs awaiting slaughter — estimated at 120,000 and growing by 12,000 each week. As well as running out of space, herds are growing over their prime weight for consumption, and if culled, will be unable to enter the food chain — resulting in pork shortages for retailers.
The measures include:
· Introduction of longer working days where possible and processing of animals on Saturday.
· Government-funded private storage aid scheme in England which will enable meat. processors to store slaughtered pigs for 3-6 months so that they can be preserved safely and processed later.
· Suspension of pork levy holiday for farmers in England and Scotland. This will amount to savings for the sector of just under £1 million.
· Additional temporary visas for pork butchers.
· Supporting establishments that have been delisted by China to identify other export markets for pork.