Cross-border transport businesses brace for no-deal Brexit 'chaos'
Separated 52 miles by sea, over 55 million tonnes of goods are transported between Dover and Calais every year, which is one of the major transport corridors connecting Continental Europe to the UK.
Demand for road freight transportation increases six percent year on year. But Brexit, especially a hard Brexit, poses a substantial risk to the industry, even if Brexit has a short stay of execution (at least) till April 12. How will transportation of goods fare with a no-deal Brexit?
As soon as Brexit kicks in, there will be border checks leading to delays.
Over 2.6 million trucks run through the border every year, which means 10,000 trucks a day, 300 trucks an hour, and 12 trucks every second. And border-checking delays would definitely impact border transport businesses.
Belgian-based Haulier NinaTrans, that does 20 percent of the business in the UK, is already feeling the looming Brexit pinch.
Deliveries that earlier took half a day, now take almost two days. The delay is risking production lines and costing clients 50 percent more.
These businesses are doing their best to prepare their drivers for Brexit. Arming them with every possible licence and making sure they carry a valid passport on all journeys.
Port authorities in both Dover and Calais are preparing for massive disruptions.
Can the UK coalesce and find a solution to end the Brexit groundhog? While they are given room to try, the good news is that not even a potential hard Brexit will stop road transportation, even if they are gridlocked.
Temporary agreements will go into effect that will allow trucking companies to keep calm and carry on for nine months. And the UK government will also slash tariffs on 87 percent of imported goods to zero.