UK Government introduces new measures to further ease fuel supply chain pressures
28 Sep 2021
Published in: Black Country Chamber of Commerce News
The UK government has recently announced further measures to help further ease supply chain pressures and spikes in localised demand for fuel.
The UK Government has recently announced further measures to help further ease supply chain pressures and spikes in localised demand for fuel, including the approval to put on standby a pool of military drivers and extension to specific HGV licences.
British Army tanker drivers will be brought to a state of readiness in order to be deployed if required to deliver fuel to where it is needed most and providing further reassurance that fuel supplies remain strong.
The military drivers will now receive specialised training before deploying, enabling them to seamlessly work with industry to address the supply chain pressures. The Military Aid to the Civil Authorities (MACA) request was issued by Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng on Monday.
Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng said:
"While the fuel industry expects demand will return to its normal levels in the coming days, it’s right that we take this sensible, precautionary step.
"The UK continues to have strong supplies of fuel, however we are aware of supply chain issues at fuel station forecourts and are taking steps to ease these as a matter of priority.
"If required, the deployment of military personnel will provide the supply chain with additional capacity as a temporary measure to help ease pressures caused by spikes in localised demand for fuel."
The measure announced today will apply to licences expiring between 27 September 2021 and 31 December 2021, and extend their validity until 31 January 2022.
This will provide immediate relief to the shortage of fuel drivers by permitting affected drivers to maximise their available capacity instead of being taken out of circulation for refresher training purposes.
A summary of the new measures include:
- Limited number of military tanker drivers to be put on a state of readiness and deployed if necessary to further stabilise fuel supply chain
- Extension to ADR driver licences, permitting drivers to maximise their available capacity instead of being taken out of circulation for refresher training purposes
- Next step comes after relaxation of competition rules and package of measures to speed recruitment of HGV driver
The announcement follows a joint statement issued by the fuel industry confirming that fuel supplies at UK refineries and terminals remain high as well as encouraging the public to continue to purchase fuel as normal.
Last week the Government announced a further package of measures to help ease supply chain pressures. These include an immediate increase in HGV testing, short term visas for HGV drivers and new skills bootcamps to train up to 3,000 more people to become HGV drivers.
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