On Friday 10 December, the EU published a proposed temporary contingency measure which would, if a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) is not concluded, allow UK hauliers to continue to perform some journeys to and from the EU without the need for any permits.
If approved, the Commission’s proposal allows UK hauliers the right to perform journeys to and from destinations in the EU for 6 months until 30 June.
It would also allow UK hauliers to transit the Republic of Ireland on journeys to and from Northern Ireland, but it would not provide transit to third countries, cabotage or cross-trade.
The Commission’s proposal will now be urgently considered by the European Council and European Parliament, and the UK Government is confident it will be adopted in time for it to come into effect from 1 January 2021.
It is possible that the proposal’s duration – and/or the rights it provides for UK hauliers – could be amended during this legislative process. If so, we will provide further details.
Full details of the proposed contingency measure can be found in the European Commission’s Communication and the legal proposal.
What should I do if I have been allocated an ECMT permit?
For those of you who applied for an ECMT permit, this development may inform your decision as to whether you wish to take up any permits you have been allocated. For clarity, those permits also allow journeys across the EU to third countries and up to 3 cross-trade movements as part of a round-trip.
Permits which have already been purchased will be processed and applicants should receive them in coming days.
The publication of the Commission’s proposal is a positive development in maintaining basic connectivity, but we appreciate the challenges that this continued period of uncertainty on international market access rights means for your business.
We will continue to inform you of further developments as soon as possible.