The British Ports Association has welcomed the Government’s announcements on new Brexit borders funding to cover infrastructure, systems and staffing.
The £705m includes funding to build borders facilities at ports where infrastructure can be built on site, as well as for Government to build inland infrastructure sites, where ports do not have the space.
The British Ports Association, which represents a wide variety of UK port operators, including all the major ferry terminals that facilitate tens of thousands of HGVs between Britain and the EU every day, has been asking for funding commitments for some time and previously wrote to the Prime Minister outlining its concerns.
Commenting, Richard Ballantyne, Chief Executive at the British Ports Association said:
These are helpful measures designed to ease the new borders requirements which come into force next year. We are particularly grateful that the Government has listened and agreed to our requests to pay for new infrastructure both at ports and at inland sites. We look forward to reviewing the detail but this is an important first step to help limit the impacts of Britain’s departure from the EU.
Borders infrastructure of course means there will be some impact on freight and potentially flows of traffic. We therefore pressing for the pragmatic enforcement of such processes so that trucks and cargo are not held up at our ports. Of course there is still a huge amount to prepare for and operators across the freight and logistics sectors will need to understand what will be required and what this will mean for their businesses.
Port operators are keen to see the detail of our future borders arrangements. The Government is setting out its new Border Operating Model and a new publicity campaign for the freight sector and we look forward to discussing these with officials. About half of our trade is with the EU and so this is why we need to get the arrangements right.
Sea News, July 13