16 March 2021
The logistics industry is in desperate need of workers to fill a variety of operational roles, including heavy goods vehicle (HGV) drivers, according to Logistics UK, but government policy is preventing workers from accessing these careers.
The transport industry body is therefore urging the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) to put in place a programme to catch up on the tens of thousands of driving tests lost during the lockdown.
It was responding to figures released recently by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) that show unemployment in the UK is at its highest rate since 2016 (5.1%).
Elizabeth de Jong, Director of Policy at Logistics UK, said: “With the UK facing such high unemployment, those seeking work should not be prevented from taking advantage of the opportunities available in logistics.”
Given that HGV driver training typically costs around £7000 per person, she said that Logistics UK is also calling for the Government to provide interest free loans or grants to train and reskill potential employees.
With Covid-19, Brexit, new technology and other disruptive forces driving change in the way goods move across borders and through the supply chain, logistics has never been more important, Ms de Jong continued.
She highlighted that more than seven million people are directly employed in the making, selling and moving of goods in this country.