UK Presses for Driver Visas to Ease Supply Chain Issues

Recently, Logistics UK urged the government to take another look at its decision not to grant temporary work visas. In July, temporary work visas were requested for EU HGV drivers due to pressure on its supply chain because of the low numbers of available delivery drivers. Read on to learn more.


Mounting Pressure

The lack of available delivery personnel was causing quite a strain on the UK’s supply chain. The shortage was clocked at about 90,000 drivers short. This massive number caused extreme stress on the country’s interconnected supply chain. Logistics UK believes this pressure could be relieved temporarily by allowing EU workers back in.  “Logistics has relied on EU drivers for many years, and their loss at the start of the year as a result of Brexit has hit the sector hard,” said Alex Veitch, General Manager of Public Policy for Logistics UK. “While new drivers are trained and qualify – a process which can take up to nine months – and DVSA works through its backlog of outstanding HGV driver tests – which we estimate could take until early 2022, it would be prudent for the government to enable temporary visas to be made available for European workers to return to supplement the domestic workforce.”

Credit Where Credit is Due

A senior company executive is calling on the logistics industry to give much-deserved credit to the driver. According to them, if the industry wants to reverse the dwindling spotlight on HGV careers, they need to start showing some respect to the drivers themselves. The UK’s driver pool is currently 100,000 down from its pre-pandemic total. But even before the pandemic, it needed new recruitment tactics. Hopefully, by focusing on the importance of the drivers’ roles, this can change.

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