Burnett issued the warning the day after he led a delegation from the road haulage industry to petition the Prime Minister for urgent help to train up new drivers. The industry is calling for £150m ($238m) from the Government in the summer Budget scheduled for 8 July.
Burnett said, “We warmly welcome the positive news on the employment figures. They are another sign that the UK economy is continuing to strengthen. However, we are suffering from a severe skills shortage in our industry. Failing to address the chronic driver shortage threatens to stop the UK economy recovery in its tracks and it will be a missed opportunity for the Government in its drive to achieve full employment.”
Burnett said, “Getting a truck licence costs somewhere between £3,000 and £5,000 – that’s a huge amount of money for people trying to enter the industry – and most haulage businesses are small family companies who run on very small margins so they too struggle to fund the training. Currently, there is no suitable apprenticeship scheme for truck driver training. That’s why I was at Downing Street calling on the Prime Minister and the Chancellor to invest £150m into driver training as an urgent priority to help keep the recovery on track.”
Source: Road Haulage Association
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