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Freight: EU Countries

Question for Department for Transport

UIN 285042, tabled on 2 September 2019

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment his Department has made of the effect on the (a) UK road haulage industry (b) the workforce of that industry and (c) consumers of his Department's criteria for allocating European Council of Ministers Transport permits.

Answered on

9 September 2019

The criteria used for allocating European Conference of Ministers of Transport road haulage permits were designed to deliver on the principles of obtaining the greatest economic benefit from the permits, protecting the interests of UK hauliers, and applying a fair and consistent process.

The Government has been clear that is does not intend to rely solely on ECMT permits if the UK leaves the EU without a deal.

The EU has agreed a regulation on basic road connectivity that guarantees rights for UK hauliers to continue providing services between the UK and the EU until at least 31 December 2019 meaning that most haulage trips to EU or EEA countries will not be affected. The European Commission has on 4 September 2019 published a proposal to extend the regulation until 31 July 2020. The proposal, when combined with the ECMT system, would ensure that 99% of trips to the EU could continue to operate as they currently do for the first four months of the Regulation.

A small proportion of operators may require ECMT permits for transit to third countries during November and December 2019 and these can be purchased from the DVSA.

The UK also has historic bilateral agreements and it is our view that the majority of them would revive in an absence of an EU wide measure.