Brexit: Freight procurement framework shifts up a gear

Eight firms have been approved to provide freight capacity for the transport of critical goods, such as medicines, after the UK leaves the EU. Transport secretary, Grant Shapps today announced the successful appointment to the freight procurement framework of Air Charter Services; Brittany Ferries; DFDS A/S; Irish Ferries ; P&O Ferries; Seatruck Ferries; Eurotunnel and Stena Line.

These operators will now bid for the first freight capacity contracts for 31st October – equivalent to thousands of HGVs per week – to ensure the resilience of transporation networks after departure from the trading bloc.

Shapps said preparations to leave the EU were continuing at pace and that ensuring the flow of life-saving medicines into the UK was part of that planning.

“This framework guarantees long-term national resilience and I’m confident the combined expertise of these high quality and experienced firms appointed to the framework will ensure we are ready for Brexit day and beyond.

To support the flow of lifesaving medicines into the UK, the competitions will focus on ports and terminals away from areas forecast as most likely for potential disruption, should it occur. Therefore the freight terminals of Dover, Calais, Dunkirk, Boulogne-sur-Mer, Folkestone, Coquelles, and Barking are not included. The risk and impact of disruption at these ports and terminals caused by a potential lack of trader readiness could affect the flow of vital goods.

It is now thought that the framework may be in place for the next four years, rather than 12 months, as previously understood.

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