UK Road Haulage Association (RHA) vindicated raised flag on the issue
The RHA’s campaigning over delays at ports in January has been vindicated by the latest figures from the Office for National Statistics which show exports to the EU fell by 40% in January. This is despite claims from the Government that trade flows and exports were “near normal” and that customs issues were “teething troubles”.
The RHA has consistently argued that the problems were not short term but were part of the Brexit deal agreed in December and traders and hauliers have suffered as a result.
Commenting, RHA chief executive Richard Burnett said: “Government tried to dismiss problems at the border as ‘teething problems’, but these figures prove that’s far from the case.
“This is clearly a consequence of a lack of customs agents and the Government’s failure to prepare industry adequately for huge post-transition changes.”
“The picture is slowly improving as industry has pulls out all the stops to make things work but exports are still significantly down on the corresponding period in previous years.”
“We welcome Mr Gove’s announcement yesterday to delay import checks. It’s a pragmatic move in the short term but it remains to be seen whether the Government and EU will sufficiently prepare industry in time.”