In the wake of the UK voting to leave the European Union (EU) in the referendum on June 23, 2016, the Freight Transport Association (FTA) has said that coming out of union risks new costs, restrictions and bureaucratic requirements being imposed on moving goods in and out of Europe.
FTA Chief Executive, David Wells, said: “Even though we are coming out of Europe politically, it remains our biggest export market and the supplier of a high proportion of our imports. We cannot allow new bureaucratic burdens to hamper the efficient movement of exports heading for customers and imported goods destined for British consumers.”
“The Government has two years to ensure the conditions currently imposed on other non-EU member states such as Albania and Serbia are not imposed on UK freight flows. Norway and Switzerland have better arrangements but have accepted tough conditions including the free movement of people, so this will be a difficult negotiation.
“Britain may be out of Europe but it’s not out of business and FTA will be leading the campaign on behalf of exporters and importers to keep trade procedures simple and the costs of international transport down.”
The CPT said it was it had been contacted by a number of members about the implications of the UK leaving the EU.
A spokesman said: “So soon after the historic result, it is far too early to say precisely what this could mean for the day to day operations of bus and coach operators.
“There follows a protracted period of detailed negotiations, and CPT will of course play an active role in discussions and will continue to work for the good of the industry through all the channels that remain open to us. As soon as we have anything else to share with members, we will do so through our regular Newsline, Coaching Matters and regional publications.”
The Urban Transport Group also commented on the outcome of the referendum.
Dr Jon Lamonte, Chairman, said: “In the aftermath of the EU Referendum it is more important than ever that the momentum behind investment in our urban and inter-urban transport networks is maintained.
“The evidence clearly shows that if we want a resilient economy, we need to continue to invest in transport networks of the quality and capacity needed to meet the demands of our cities’ growing economies – as well as improving their connectivity with each other and the wider world.
“Devolution of responsibilities over transport to cities and city regions has also brought major benefits – as can be seen not just in London but now increasingly in other cities too. There should be no slowing in this process of devolving more decision making on transport to our major urban centres as it offers the prospect of better integrated transport services and networks with smart and simple ticketing, as well as more locally accountable decision making which is better able to focus investment on where it can make most impact.
“As the voice of urban transport for the UK, we will continue to work with the global public transport body, UITP, as well as with our counterpart cities and city regions in Europe and the wider world, in order to continue to drive the agenda and learn from each other about what works best in tackling the common challenges that urban transport authorities face.”
Backhouse Jones has provided a Legal Update in this week’s magazine on what the result of the referendum could mean for the industry. See page 34