Brexit: Lorry checks at Dover ‘unrealistic’ says Grayling

Dover, UK: There will be no customs checks at Dover after the UK leaves the EU, said Chris Grayling, transport secretary.

Physical checks on lorries after March 2019 would be “utterly unrealistic,” he told the BBC’s Question Time recorded in Dover this week. Trade would be managed electronically to allow “seamless” movement, he said.

Grayling said goods moved seamlessly across national borders elsewhere in the world and there was no reason this would not happen after Brexit.

Logistics companies which operate UK borders have been asked to sign “non-disclosure agreements” as part of a government information-gathering exercise on Brexit, reports Sky News.

Sky says individual firms and trade bodies have been sworn to secrecy about conversations with officials about the impact on freight traffic if there is no Brexit agreement as well as other possible scenarios.

UK: Treasury to look at how red diesel undercuts clean tech

London, UK: Chancellor Philip Hammond is to call for evidence “on whether the use of non agricultural red diesel tax relief contributes to poor air quality in urban areas”.

Treasury sources say the call for evidence announced this week will look at how the availability of red diesel can present a barrier for the uptake of cleaner technologies.

Dearman has long argued that access to cheaper diesel is damaging for Britain’s air quality.  The company points out that, for example, there are 26,000 refrigerated trucks in Britain that have a weakly-regulated second engine powered by red diesel. Dearman estimates that these 26,000 trucks emit particulate matter to the equivalent of 3.2 million diesel cars.

The company is calling on the Chancellor to commit to acting on any findings that show the damaging impact on air quality of red diesel-powered non-road mobile machinery, particularly transport refrigeration units.

The latest call for evidence is expected to launch in the next week.  Scott Mac Meekin, chief executive, Dearman, said:  “I welcome the Chancellor’s announcement of a call for evidence on how red diesel contributes to poor air quality in urban areas. Specifically, this time the Treasury will be looking at how access to cheaper red diesel can disincentivise the uptake of cleaner technologies. This is an important step as the Government seeks to tackle air pollution.

“The Chancellor should commit to acting on any findings that show how non-road mobile machinery, especially transport refrigeration units, pollute Britain’s air by being able to access cheap diesel. This would be a real boost to the clean technologies that are affordable and available on the market.”

Stef turnover up 5.4%

Paris, France: Stef reports it tunronover for 2017 up 5.4% to €2,975.7m (€2,824.5 (2016).

The year was marked by economic recovery in Europe with a favourable impact on food consumption, Stef said in its annual report. During the period, operating margin remained stable, at 5.1% of turnover (excluding trading).

In 2017, Stef increased its equity from €559m in 2016 to €628m. During the period, the group benefited from a low financing cost, which amounted to 1.68% at 31 December 2017, compared with 2.41% at 31 December 2016, the company said.

Jean-Pierre Sancier, chief executive, said: “2017 was a good year in terms of both turnover and profitability, thanks to the growth of Transport France activities and the dynamism of International Operations. These results mean that we are looking forward to 2018 with confidence.”

Turnover for Transport France increased 18.8% from €60.5m in 2016 to €71.9m last year.

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