UK government rejects temporary EU visas to HGV drivers

Convenience stores across Cambridgeshire could soon be hit with supply shortages after delivery drivers voted to go in strike.
There could soon be delivery shortages due to a pay dispute.
// UK government turns blind eye on granting temporary working visas to HGV drivers from Europe
// The driver shortage has affected retailers’ supply chains over the last few months

The UK government has rejected industry calls to issue temporary visas to European truck drivers in an effort reduce shortages.

The driver shortage has affected retailers’ supply chains over the last few months.

Ministers rejected pleas from logistics and retail trade bodies for it to grant temporary working visas to heavy goods vehicle drivers from Europe.


READ MORE: 6 retailers that have addressed the lorry driver shortage


However, the government said it accepted the need to look at offering more training courses to ease the shortage.

The effects of the ongoing shortage were highlighted in a joint letter to business secretary Kwasi Kwarteng by trade bodies Logistics UK and the BRC.

They estimated that there was currently a shortfall of about 90,000 HGV drivers in the UK that was placing “increasingly unsustainable pressure on retailers and their supply chains”.

“The impact of the driver shortage is already being felt, with many businesses struggling to get goods into distribution centres and depots and — in some cases — into shops, with ramifications for consumer choice,” the bodies said.

The two bodies also warned the government the situation was likely to get worse before it gets better, citing a demand for goods increasing with the start of the new school year, employees returning to workplaces and the build-up to Christmas.

They also called for special government skills and training schemes, as well as providing additional staff at the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency.

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20 COMMENTS

  1. Strict policies, low wages, non sense rules for hgv drivers, long hours, ir35, no respect
    and many more reasons are caused for hgv driver shortage.

  2. They only want to bring in EU drivers because they don’t want to pay a proper wage for the job they do EU workers drove the wages down in the UK and businesses have been making all the extra cash as profits. It’s about time the UK government said no and the businesses should pay a proper wage for the industry then they would get the drivers that they needed

  3. I’m a multi drop HGV 2 driver delivering to supermarkets and shops.
    I have up to 20 drops over 200 miles in distance and regularly work 12 hour shifts 5 days a week.
    The work is stressful and tiring.
    The basic wage is poor and only made worthwhile by overtime and working every weekend.

    • Yeah you’re right. This haulage companies are using us as a slave. Once they told me if I don’t want to to a job then piss off. What more I can do after 15hrs of my shift. It’s crazy. Government did good not to allow temp visa to EU drivers.

  4. This isn’t a problem that’s suddenly happened, it’s been 25 to 30 years in the making and is totally down to the haulage industry not investing in new drivers, Instead they expect them to pay for their training, then once they’ve made that investment, offer them barely above the minimum hourly rate, expect them to work long hours, with irregular start and finish times, which put a strain on family life and treat them like some unwanted smell when they turn up at some distribution centre.

  5. Overworked most hgv drivers are and underpaid and persecuted too much by authorities too many complex drivers hours laws and by vosa, and the police.

  6. People do not want to drive trucks. The hours, conditions, attitudes towards them and a poor salary do not incentivise young people to join the industry. Are we going to go down the road of recruiting staff from the third world? There are more than enough license holders, like myself, who left behind 24hr. mindset of the transport industry. Things need to change.

  7. Stobart,Downton,Maritime, and the rest of the big guns have ruled the roost for too long.
    You want to keep your contracts?Then pay your drivers a real wage instead of relying on eu drivers to keep wages low and do 15 hour days for buttons you bunch of cunts!

    • Oh mate! Downton is the worse one. You’re true. They have axed their own feet. Can you imagine, the transport office operator earns more money and benefits better social life without worrying. This haulage companies needed to be punished.

  8. It’s the companies own fault they screwed us over when those from the EU came over and drove for less money and it’s going to get worse cos the firm’s won’t pay more but offer signing on bonus for new drivers but their full time staff get diddly squat add that to it the amount of things you can be fined or serve time in prison for you don’t get that in any other unskilled types of work is it any wonder there’s a 90,000 driver shortage

  9. Nobody is talking about the ridiculous cpc course needed to drive hgv that puts people off, there is so many people who hold hgv licence but not working within the industry because of all the red tape and not paid enough…… Worker retention is the problem not lack of qualified hgv drivers

  10. Alot of great comments above, as a new driver to the industry I am shocked at the hours that I am expected to work/drive, most 5 days so far I have been working 65 hours. Shocked shocked. Unsocialable hours are terrible. Due to lack of HGV drivers toilets and facilities I am expected to relieve myself on the hard shoulder.

    3 months into working as a HGV driver and I am finding out that the conditions are horrific.

    Total revamp of the industry required or I won’t last another 3 months.

  11. I am nearly 67 I am getting phone calls to return from 2 things retirement and long covid but first I’ve to pay 50quid for medical can I last till.i 68 a year medical required

  12. I only do part time class 2, I love the freedom of road & job.

    Some of the working conditions are hard to bear, put worth it.
    The industry certainly needs to take a long good look at itself!!.

  13. I am a truck driver. What can I say … You wanted Brexit? You have Brexit. You wanted to be “Great” Britain? You are … What else do you want? In a moment you will not have fuel, no food … No self-respecting European will come to you for 3 months so that you have a better Christmas. It was sure that it would be so. 60% of you have never worked, just sitting on the benefits. Lazy people. And the youth? He prefers to sit in front of the tv. I can go to Azerbaijan to help but not the lazy Brits who have always had to work for. In a moment there will be no one to work in every industry, not only in transport. You treated those who worked for you like a trash, it came back to you, which is good ….. Relax….There will be no chicken for Christmas

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