The UK economy has been experiencing supply chain issues caused by a number of overlapping issues which we have commented on. Also see our page on global container congestion and the phased end of the Brexit transition.
26 August: Haulier Shortages
Comment from Richard Ballantye, BPA Chief Executive: “The lack haulage capacity has contributed to inefficiencies across the supply chain. We are seeing increased wait times at ports. The shortages pushes up costs and puts suppliers under more pressure. As many have warned, Covid and Brexit have obviously contributed to haulier shortages and we are very supportive of the haulage industry’s calls for a review of the post Brexit immigration rules for European based HGV drivers. Action is needed now, particularly ahead of the introduction of new enforcement controls for imports in January which could add more pressures on the supply chain.”
22 July 2021: The ‘Pingdemic’
Comment from Richard Ballantye, BPA Chief Executive: “Ports undertake essential activities, helping supply the country with food, goods and fuel. The current ‘pingdemic’ and rules requiring individuals to self isolate if alerted by the NHS App is taking critical workers out of action and we are keen to see port workers given a special status to keep our international gateways open:
“The logistics industry is being stretched and we are approaching a critical point in the government’s pandemic response. Indeed the current increase in port employees, logistics workers and haulier absences due to Covid alerts, is really putting the freight sector under serious pressure. It’s time for the government to act. Essentially staff shortages are leading to inefficiencies across the logistics sector which have created some delays in goods being transported to and from UK traders. It’s important we act now to prevent the situation from escalating.
“There are a number of critical roles undertaken by port operators, such as dock workers, crane drivers and maritime pilots and it is essential that these roles are included in any exemptions. However other port staff and the wider logistics workforces also need to be recognised. As we have seen previously, the freight and shipping industry are nothing but resilient so with support from the government we can keep the country trading and open for business.”