Brexit: The HGV driver shortage was warned about years ago…

The driver shortage has resulted in a dependence on agency and particularly foreign drivers that goes beyond what is needed to cope with seasonal variations and is now necessary to sustain normal operation. The dependence on agency staff means that operators in the sector are probably not investing enough in their staff. We think this creates two risks that need to be managed. First, if the UK becomes relatively less attractive as a place for foreign drivers to work, as it may do as the consequences of Brexit play out, the shortage could become much more acute, possibly quite rapidly. Second, the longer-term sustainability of the UK’s road haulage sector could be undermined if there is not a steady stream of people through the sector gaining the skills and experience that they need to become transport managers and operators” (…) “Both the industry and Government have taken steps to address the shortage. None of these are on a scale likely to deliver the number of drivers needed. The road haulage sector, supported by the Government, needs to take further steps to:

meet any shortage and reduce dependence on foreign drivers (about 60,000 drivers);

meet any predicted growth in demand; and

deal with the demographic time-bomb (about 75,000 drivers by 2020)” (Parliament.uk – ‘Skills and workforce planning in the road haulage sector’ 27.07.2016).

Sometimes you wonder if the Tories and the Cabinet Secretaries are so forgetful. You can wonder, if they care about warnings and red signs. The Brexit referendum would clearly target the haulage industry. As it is dependent on European Union citizens with license and ability to drive heavy-goods driver (HGV).

The Tories have offered a three month visa parley to everyone they sent packing after the Brexit was issued. The European Union Haulage Unions have dismissed this offer. They are saying they can easily be used, but sent straight back without any consideration for work. Therefore, the EU HGV drivers will not return to save Christmas in the United Kingdom.

Yes, the government gave this “amnesty” or ability during the weekend. At the same time it has put in regulations that all vehicles and lorries who is going into EU from the UK has to take-off their stickers with GB and change that to UK. That is actually something they have done. Just like changing colour on the passport. It is symbolic changes, but not what industries need in these dire times.

The Tories and the Downing Street needs to focus on. They are not securing the livelihoods of the HGV drivers. Neither has it made efforts or done anything for the foreseeable future. They are instead trying to patch up the hurt without any real reform for the transport sector. Which is needed to cope with the lack of trained personnel, salaries or even long-term prospects to work in the haulage industry.

The UK needs the EU HGV drivers to be able to cope. That is why we are seeing again the possibility of the army to do logistics in the Kingdom. Since, the Tories haven’t secured or made it possible for others to cover needs, which is clearly there. The Tories cannot even come with sound judgement or policies, which will make it feasible for the grandstanding departure of previous drivers to return. These will not return when they are getting pennies on the pound and working in crappy conditions while staying in UK. It is not like Boris Johnson or any of his cadre will humiliate themselves in the same regard. No, they rather spend vacations in Caribbean and hope someone else fixes the problems they created.

The Tories haven’t secure the basics. That’s why the supermarkets lacks produce and commodities, why farmers lack’s personnel to pick and secure their produce to market and finally lack of drivers to deliver the needed things across the Kingdom. The Tories haven’t given incentives or prospects for anyone then themselves.

The lack of drivers isn’t only the fault of Brexit alone. It is a systemic fault of a incompetent government. Who is all about publicity, but not about proper policies. This is why it is happening. The fuel-shortage and the empty shelves in the supermarkets says it all. It is not the fault of the public, but the politicians that promised heaven. However, they haven’t delivered the golden gates, but instead showed a little piece of hell.

Kudos to the Tories for failing in such a manner. They will blame anyone else and even say it’s the public own faults for buying petrol. The Tories will go after the companies itself, than look into own misgivings. Because that’s what they do.

What is extra tragic here is that they knew this could be amplified and gotten worse by the efforts of Brexit. However, the state didn’t act upon or take in-consideration the needs of the haulage industry. Therefore, the Tories who was in power the whole time could have made things possible, but clearly they never did. Peace.

Opinion: Brexit was bound to fail [and the results are now coming in]

The referendum of withdrawal from the European Union (EU) of 2016 settled the score and made it possible for the Conservative Party (Tories) to launch their campaign and gain majority of the Parliament. In such a manner, that they have had two Prime Ministers and had a long hurdle to come to terms with the EU on how to leave.

After long negotiations and plenty of delay. The final “Brexit Day” was enforced on the 31st January 2020. So, with the months that has gone and with the implementation of the Withdrawal Agreement in combination with the talks between London and Brussels. There is no end to this and the effects of the matter is no obvious for everyone to see.

The ones that was Remainer and was on the side to stay in the Union is now vindicated. As it is more “red-tape” and the Brexit Agreement isn’t making things easier. There been conflict over fishing rights with France. Fish and Sea-Food have rotted in port, instead of being exported to the mainland Europe from Scotland. Imports has slowed down, hauliers stopping deliveries to the UK and foreign workers to many fields are lacking. With all of this in mind. It is not a success, but a brutal and self-inflicted suffering.

Brexit was bound fail. The utter total failure was anticipated by plenty and it’s now evident. The Brexiteers should also reflect on it. They should man-up and see the results as they are. The possible use of army to get food delivered across the Kingdom. That should say it all. As the importers are not getting their products in time and neither able to secure the delivery from the exports to Britain.

UK becoming a ‘Third County’ isn’t giving it vast freedoms. Yes, the UK could make trade-deals with Australia and Kenya. However, the major trading partners with the EU and near proximity is harden. Not like there been any good industrial news or set-up of factories. Neither, hasn’t there been news of exceptional growth.

The supply-chains have been like this for one simple reason. The UK is out of the Single-Market and there is added bureaucracy and checks on goods passing through the borders. There is need for more documents and hurdles before passing has hurt the Kingdom. That is easy reasons to see why supermarkets run out of goods. Restaurant-chains are running out of main products and cannot serve customers. Other type of goods are lacking too and if that is with the imports. How dire is the situation for the exporters?

We knew earlier in the year that the exports was hit hard. They we’re not able to send produce, sea-food and others on time. The companies was losing money and their assets was rotting in ports. With this knowledge, the same hardship is now hitting home. Not only that the British Sea-Shells and other sea-food isn’t served in Paris anymore. At least not at the scale or in such a manner, which it was in the past.

The ones pledging for this and had their way. Should stand astute and bravely say: “We were wrong and crippled our economy. We fought for freedom, but instead being left alone. Brexit was supposed to give us new profitable terms, but it hasn’t and we lost. That’s why we have to see, if we can negotiate or find new ways of getting into the Single-Market and the Customs Union. As we are now a third country with little to no say. We have to change this and we are sorry for promising the world and not even giving you chicken at Nando’s”. Peace.

Brexit: “Operation Yellowhammer” is in full effect with the Army drive for the supermarkets

Certainly, some should feel a bit vindicated these days. Especially the Remainers who campaigned for “Project Fear” which was so scrutinized and called a blame-game of a worse scenario. The last few weeks has really shown the consequences of the Brexit. A Brexit that the Conservative and Tories promised to be easy and without any real costs.

However, everyone in their right mind knows that a divorce on this scale would cost. The marriage had to end and the transactions after this would be made more difficult. The Tories haven’t made things smooth or better. The rules and regulations between the United Kingdom and European Union is hectic. Several of companies and hauliers have stopped trading with the UK. This is now costing and showing results in the supermarkets across the Kingdom. That is not shocking, but was inevitable.

The Project Yellowhammer and Worst Case Scenario of August 2019 is now playing out. Where there was talks and projected to have disruptions of food supplies and across the supply chain. That was described there and clearly it is evident now.

The recent news says it all:

The Army has been put on standby to deliver supplies to supermarkets as Britain faces a shortage of 100,000 truck drivers. Around 2,000 personnel who are qualified HGV drivers are believed to be on a five-day notice to help distribute food and essentials including medicine. The Government is set to make a formal plea to the military for help ‘imminently’, with members of the Royal Logistics Corps and other regiments expected to be called upon by the end of September” (Siba Jackson – ‘Army ‘on standby’ to deliver food amid shortage of lorry drivers’ 08.08.2021, Metro.co.uk).

You know Brexit is a lose-lose enterprise when the businesses and the supermarkets needs the army to salvage the supply chain. The Tories and the government have failed the businesses and the consumers i.e. the citizens. They have told stories which wasn’t true.

All of the promises of a easy and simple transition is clearly out of the window. The reality is here now and the UK has to face it. The Tories got to find measures, means and possible way out of it. The soldiers and the ones who conscript to the army shouldn’t drive produce to Tesco or pick up lorries in Dover. That is just a failure if there ever was one.

This is just proving the pointers of the Remainers ahead of the referendum. The Brexiteers who promised so blatantly and wrongly that this would be a neat process. They should all take the mantle and configure this out. Since they are the ones who made it happen and ensure everyone that the basics are in order. Because, when the supermarkets and the convenient stores are running out of goods. You know you are in trouble.

There was plenty of folks who knew the Brexit and the new bureaucratic hurdles would cost, take time and stifle the logistics from Europe to the United Kingdom. The ones who has to import or export is paying the price. There has already been fish rotting in the ports and not getting through the system before they are expired. Therefore, the Brexit has destroyed businesses and ensured many are harder daily life.

The Tories especially, the wing of the Brexiteers has to take accountability. They need to fix this and not just settle with the army on standby. That is a show of weakness and that they totally failed. The Brexit isn’t a success, but a abomination of a government policy. It is a train-wreck and an insult to citizens. They sold a story of gold, but not everything that is shimmering is that. The Brexiteers sold fools-gold and a small majority believed it.

Now, everyone has to pay the price for it and surely nobody wants to hear it. Since it is visible and the HM Government haven’t got the qualified or the ability to figure this one out. The inept and corrupt government will not have the skills or the mindset to fix this. They will only make another circus and hope no-one see the real problems. Peace.

Brexit: European Commission – Withdrawal Agreement: European Commission sends letter of formal notice to the United Kingdom for breach of its obligations (01.10.2020)

Brexit: Boris is giving the middle finger to Brussels

It is a reason why the European Union, the bureaucracy in Brussels shouldn’t trust London, Her Majesty’s Government and Whitehall. The 10 Downing Street, the Prime Minister Boris Johnson shows how devious he is this week. His using all terms and all ways to vilify the EU. Instead of looking into his own actions.

The EU didn’t force the Tories to sign and ratify the Withdrawal Agreement, an agreement the Tories in combination with the EU Negotiation Team made together. Which was revised between the Theresa May government, where Boris was the Foreign Secretary and his own term before passing it. This was supposed to be a “oven ready” deal.

The Tories, the ERG and all the Brexiteers has promised a simple and easy transition from being a member state to become “fully independent”. Alas, these folks have forgotten even though they are residing on a island. They are not living in a vacuum. These folks are acting like they can decide and that there is no implication from the other party. They are expecting the EU just to accept similar terms from a “third-country”. While the EU Members are supposed to swallow the bitter pill. That is how unserious and dumb the London regime is.

Boris is really acting a fool, when he late last year Accepted the WA, which was within boundaries, having safeguards and clauses to secure the integrity of the United Kingdom and the Good Friday Agreement, as the EU wouldn’t want to jeopardize the economy or the free movement from Ireland to Northern Ireland. That is just an simple argument at this point.

Still, the Tories is okay with doing something illegal, breaching international law and getting disrepute worldwide. They are willing to risk further trade-deals with all outside countries. Inflict even more damage, than what a no-deal would initially do and renegotiate after World Trade Organization standards. The UK really wanting to be a pariah state in Europe. Ensuring they are left behind and all on their own behalf. Becoming independent from the EU, but at a huge price.

Boris is playing with fire and won’t feel the consequences until the fire is put out. Then the investigations can say what has been damaged and estimates to rebuild. The UK are willing to risk all and also its reputation. There will be few who are willing to trust and even make arrangements. As they see months ahead of time. The UK might vilify and amplify own interests over the agreed upon agreement. That is how it seems now.

Yes, the UK could have been in another situation, if it never accepted the WA, but it did. They voted it in and ratified it. They negotiated the deal and the stipulated articles are written there after. Where it has safeguards and securities for both parties. This is known, but Boris wants to play out that its risking own “integrity” and “independence”. If it was so, why did you push it through Parliament and Prorogued it before voting it through?

Boris hasn’t really planned this. This will be a “victory” for the Brexiteers, but it will be a false one. It will feel like they won something to ditch the WA, but they are also a lost island. With every measure they will become alone. They are feeding the rest of Europe with disgust, because why should they trust London and the government there? When they can months apart, ditch agreed upon deal? Why should anyone trust Johnson and his cabinet?

The Tories are proving what they are capable of off. Using the Northern Ireland for their own games, instead of serving the needs of Belfast. They are willing to risk all for a quick and brief victory. Since, the cost afterwards will be enormous. The Tories will never state that, but the price of doing it will be big. The damage is epic and it was self-destruction, all made with the intent of delivering a no-deal Brexit. A Hard Brexit, which wasn’t made for the general public, but for a self-serving elite. Peace.

Brexit: House of Lords, Baroness Taylor of Bolton Letter to Lord Chancellor Buckland – Rule of law and the UK Internal Market Bill (11.09.2020)

Brexit: Boris is trying to ambush final stages of negotiations…

If you thought this process was secured and safely followed between Brussels and London. I hate to say it to you. It’s not, because the Tories and Prime Minister Boris Johnson are again using all means to get their way. Even as the United Kingdom have already signed onto agreements with the European Union. They have already progressed to the Withdrawal Agreement. Alas, the UK and Boris think they can scrap that just a month ahead of the final stages.

If you are thinking this is a brilliant move, it’s not. They are showing disingenuous and untrustworthy partner. Who wants to change the terms and the scope of an agreement in the final stages. Instead, of continuing where they left it. He tries again the “pick and mix” strategy. Where the UK can pick what fits them well and not what will be right for the Union, which they are leaving. They anticipate to get their will and counter the already accepted terms. That is insane… but Tories way of diplomacy.

The EU have been very clear about the timetable. I am too. There needs to be an agreement with our European friends by the time of the European Council on 15 October if it’s going to be in force by the end of the year. So there is no sense in thinking about timelines that go beyond that point. If we can’t agree by then, then I do not see that there will be a free trade agreement between us, and we should both accept that and move on. We will then have a trading arrangement with the EU like Australia’s. I want to be absolutely clear that, as we have said right from the start, that would be a good outcome for the UK. As a Government we are preparing, at our borders and at our ports, to be ready for it. We will have full control over our laws, our rules, and our fishing waters. We will have the freedom to do trade deals with every country in the world. And we will prosper mightily as a result” (Boris Johnson, 07.09.2020).

When Boris speaks like this. He thinks his brilliant, but his whacking Dublin and the Brussels. Instead of helping Belfast and the Good Friday Agreement. He is issuing a statement, which is saying its okay to ditch a process. That has been going for so long.

This just shows how double edged sword this is, as the United Kingdom and its government think they can do this now. They think they can steer it all and ditch all previous commitments. That is really rich in consideration to all the previous deals and arrangements made in advance of the final stages.

If they leave without a deal. That will hurt the EU, but also hit hard the UK. The UK will have start a fresh and the conditions will be altered again. There will be nothing soft about that, as the stalling and the actions made. Might even trigger the EU to make an example of the UK. Instead, of being a trading partner and a neighbour. The EU is the main market for the UK. Therefore, it is weird that the PM takes it so easily. The cost and damages of not having a deal. The businesses and the financial institutions of London should be shaking. If not find the quickest way to Dublin to continue their operations within the parameter of EU conditions. Instead, of the uncertainty of the Whitehall and the HM Government. Who clearly have no issues to put everyone on the altar and hoping this doesn’t cost them something. Which it eventually will do.

Boris is risking it all, making assessments that is risky. Still, he thinks he can pull this off. The ones losing is sadly not him, but the British public and their businesses. Peace.

Brexit: A Letter from Mark Francois, Chairman of the ERG to Michel Barnier (26.06.2020)

Brexit: European Commission – Statement by the European Commission following the first meeting of the EU-UK Joint Committee (30.03.2020)

Brexit: EU’s mandate on negotiations shatters some Brexiteers dreams…

Today the European Commission (EC) of the European Union (EU) gave Michael Barnier a mandate to negotiate with the United Kingdom. As they are in the temporary state until the final break with the European Union, the transition period last until 31st December 2020. This means, this will last until 1st January 2021. That is the time table for this and the mandate giving today from the European Commission, which sets the standards for what to come.

The key things for me was these highlights, which really shows that the United Kingdom is really losing. There is nothing in the mandate, which gives the UK any edge. Only shows what the EU is considering important. While the UK will have to negotiate hard to get things better out of this. Especially considering they only have a taskforce within Downing Street Number 10. They don’t even have a unit fixing this anymore.

Just take a look!

ANNEX to COUNCIL DECISION authorising the opening of negotiations with the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland for a new partnership agreement” (25.02.2020)

reflect the United Kingdom’s status as a non-Schengen third country, and that a nonmember of the Union, that is not subject to the same obligations as a member, cannot have the same rights and enjoy the same benefits as a member” (EU, 25.02.2020).

Free Trade Area:

The envisaged partnership should include appropriate rules of origin based on the standard preferential rules of origin of the Union and taking into account the Union’s interest” (EU, 25.02.2020).

Road transport:

As third country operators, United Kingdom road haulage operators should not be granted the same level of rights and benefits as those enjoyed by Union road haulage operators in respect of road freight transport operations from one Union Member State to another (“grand cabotage”) and road freight transport operations within the territory of one Union Member State (“cabotage”)” (EU, 25.02.2020).

Fisheries:

Besides the cooperation on conservation, management and regulation, the objective of the provisions on fisheries should be to uphold Union fishing activities. In particular, it should aim to avoid economic dislocation for Union fishermen that have been engaged in fishing activities in the United Kingdom waters” (EU, 25.02.2020).

Gibraltar:

Any agreement between the Union and the United Kingdom negotiated on the basis of these negotiating directives will not include Gibraltar” (EU, 25.02.2020).

First things first. The EU shows a sign, which the UK haven’t understood or neglect to understand. It is that it will not have the benefits of the EU nor the previous membership as a nonmember, even if the politicians and Tories have acted like that since day one.

Secondly, the EU will work in its own interest, even with their paradigm Free-Trading Area, also making the cargo trade on the roads harder for British exporters from United Kingdom into the European Union. While also, trying to ensure the EU fishing boats access to UK seas. This is all clearly hitting the demands, but also the promises made from the Tories in the UK. They are not shielding the fisheries, they are making it harder for the exporters. Because, they cannot get the access and the mobility, which it has today.

Third, the EU has no concern about Gibraltar. That is really stuffing the faces of London, as they have promised Gibraltar safety and a secure future. However, this is the EU showing a shift in focus on this and putting a hard stance. As this has to be negotiated separately, by this mandates concern. This is surely done to please the Spanish in the EU.

However, what we are seeing, that the mandate isn’t that friendly, the direct approach sets the stakes and also doesn’t give way. As the EU needs to set the foot down and show there is a difference being on the outside, then being inside. Which is the wish of the UK. That is why it got to cost to become a nonmember. Peace.