Foreign lorry road user charging missed opportunity.
23rd October 2012
In response to the Government’s statement today that it is pressing ahead with time based lorry road user charging for all HGVs 1, Philippa Edmunds, Freight on Rail Manager, issued the following comments:-
"Whilst we support the principal of introducing a lorry road user charging system to charge foreign lorries for using UK roads to ensure fairer arrangements for the UK haulage industry, the current charge of up to £1,000 a year for foreign hauliers 2 is not high enough to improve competition for UK road haulage. It will also be expensive for the Government to administer and will place extra administrative burdens on UK hauliers. Foreign registered vehicles only make up around 6% of HGV vehicles miles in the UK.”
“Furthermore, we believe it is a missed opportunity to create a more comprehensive system which could reduce freight's environmental footprint, improve working standards, road safety and helps support modal shift, where appropriate. Most European countries introduced a similar system about ten years ago and now operate more integrated and sophisticated systems which have led to improved lorry efficiency, reduced the number of empty lorries and more freight on the railways 3."
Notes to Editors
1. HGV road user levy debate in the House of Commons today; the Bill itself will be walked in after the debate.HGV ROAD USER LEVY [WAYS AND MEANS]
Greg Clark - That provision may be made for charging a duty of excise, to be known as HGV road user levy, in respect of heavy goods vehicles used or kept on public roads in the United Kingdom.
2. Or £10 a day
3. German Maut System led to 21% improvement in lorry load efficiency; 11% reduction in empty running and increase of 7% in rail volumes between 2005 and 2010.
4. Freight on Rail believes any lorry road user charging system should meet the following criteria:-