John Woodcock MP, Labour's Shadow Transport Minister, commenting on the Government’s proposed HGV road charging scheme, said:
"Despite all the pre-election talk of imposing an immediate charge on foreign lorries using our roads, the Government has dithered and delayed for two years while it works out how to ensure that British hauliers are not caught by the scheme. The Government has admitted that its failure to include legislation in this year’s Queen’s Speech will mean no foreign lorry will face this charge until 2015.
“We need a level playing field so British lorry drivers can compete fairly with their foreign competitors but this scheme must not become an additional burden on our own businesses. The Government must clarify if, as Ministers admitted earlier this year, thousands of UK hauliers will face higher costs because EU rules mean VED cannot be set low enough to compensate all of Britain’s 248,000 HGVs. Ministers must guarantee that British hauliers will be refunded in full for any new charge and ensure that the system is as simple and non-bureaucratic as possible to ensure British business do not face additional administrative costs.”