The past few months have brought unsettling news for the delivery and logistics sectors as well as other road users; proposed increases in taxes and fuel duty were met with swift objections from MP’s and Motoring Associations.
In a move that will benefit large haulage firms and man and van companies alike, George Osborne has scrapped the 3 pence fuel duty rise that was due to hit road users in January, as outlined is his Autumn Statement; as well as reducing future increases planned for August from 5 pence to 3. The turnaround, a result of increasing pressure from those opposed is no doubt a boost for transportation and delivery companies as the now abandoned fuel duty hike would have seen a haulier operating 10 lorries fuel costs soar by £65,000.
Further, the Department for Transport released its November review “The Logistics Growth Review – Connecting People with Goods” detailing proposed plans and investments for the sector for the future. The review outlined a number of favourable changes for the delivery and logistics sectors including:
– £1bn investment in “growth critical roads”
– Securing commercial funding for logistics developments projects
– £4m investment in skills for logistics schemes and improving the image of the sector
– £8m commitment to lower emissions technologies
The investments are expected to “Improve longer term capacity, performance and resilience of congested road and rail networks”
Robert Matthams, Managing Director of Shiply (http://www.shiply.com/) the online transport marketplace with more than 40,000 transport and removal companies as members, commended the government’s turnaround on fuel duty as well as its increased support of the sector.
“These plans are great news. The logistics business makes up 7% of employment in the UK and with small profit margins (1-3%) it is important that the sector receives support, it’s a huge driver of the economy and I believe it’s significant that the government is trying to create greater confidence for investment. I also think the plans to better the image of the industry is vital, delivery services are enormously important to businesses and customers, so ensuring we invest in apprenticeships, qualifications and encouraging the next generation is key to its continued success.”