HGV shortage: Frank Moreels says there’s a ‘problem of decent jobs’
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Political analyst Ed Rennie shared a chart showing how the proportion of UK-born lorry drivers compared with those from overseas. It revealed that there was a sizable decrease in the number of EU drivers since the Brexit transition period ended last January.
He compared this driver deficit with statistics from the Office for National Statistics which revealed that there are around 230,000 people living in the UK with HGV licences but were not using them for whatever reason.
This is more than double the estimated 100,000 driver shortage causing the current supply chain issues.
He tweeted: “Anyone blaming Brexit for the HGV driver shortage from now on really is without credibility.”
He added: “Any fuel shortages are 100 percent not related to Brexit.
“Regarding HGV (non petrol) drivers, Brexit has had an effect, but it is not the cause of the shortage – merely one in a multitude of causes.”
His posts attracted responses from several Remainers who said that his comments effectively admitted that leaving the EU was a crucial factor in the country’s current supply chain crisis.
Mr Rennie responded: “Brexit is a minor factor in the HGV driver shortage, but nothing to do with the current problems with petrol.”
And when others claimed that countries in the bloc were not experiencing fuel shortages, he fired back: “A problem not occurring in the EU which is in the UK is not remotely evidence of Brexit as the cause.
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“That’s just nonsense. The two are simply not related, that is quite clear.”
He continued: “(The) petrol (shortage) is down to panic buying, not Brexit.”
Mr Rennie went on to claim that a shortage of working lorry drivers existed before Brexit and has affected countries across the EU.
In 2019 alone 24 percent of trucker positions were unfilled in the UK when freedom of movement was still in place.
This was only slightly more than the 22 percent in Poland, 21 percent in the Czech Republic and Spain’s 20 percent, according to the International Road Transport Organisation (IRU).
It has been claimed that many of the vacancies have been left unfilled because of poor working conditions and low pay.
Lorry driver Luke Vernon previously told Express.co.uk that he earned more working as a driver in London 20 years ago than drivers did until recently.
But the heightened lack of supply has caused their wages to skyrocket in recent months, with some drivers taking home more than £50,000-a-year.
This figure compares starkly with wages as low as £8.50 that some drivers were receiving until recently.
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