Emergency visa scheme ‘attracts just 27 fuel tanker drivers’

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Ministers have been told that only 27 fuel tanker drivers have applied to work in the UK from the EU through the government’s emergency visa scheme, which according to a report is designed to fix the country’s gasoline shortage. has gone.

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many times has reported that the fuel industry has little interest in the visas available to HGV drivers, raising questions about how many people will actually come to the UK to fill vacancies.

Earlier this week, the government announced that 300 fuel drivers would be allowed to come to the UK “immediately” from abroad and stay until March, while a further 4,700 visas would be allowed for foreign food truck drivers by the end of the month . February.

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There are now concerns among ministers that a failure to recruit drivers will cause further delays in restoring service stations and that the government will have to rely on the military for long-term assistance. many times.

“People don’t want to come unless it’s a really attractive option,” Rod McKenzie, policy director for the Road Haulage Association, told the newspaper.

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“You wouldn’t leave a well-paying job for a better-paying job if it only lasted a few months.”

It came as Health Secretary Sajid Javid insisted on Saturday he was “confident” that workers would come to the UK.

“Of course, there is competition for drivers – which is happening across Europe – but it is important that we try to do what we can,” Mr Javid told Sky News.

“I am confident that with the temporary visa changes announced, we will get more drivers.”

On Monday, industry leaders warned there would be gaps in supermarket shelves this Christmas due to shortages as Chancellor Rishi Sunak argued he “cannot wave a magic wand” to address supply chain problems.

“We are seeing supply disruptions, not just here but in many different places, and there are things we can try and reduce, and we are,” Mr Sunak told BBC Radio 4. Today Display.

“But we cannot wave the magic wand. I can’t do anything about the decision by any country in Asia to close the port due to the outbreak of coronavirus.”

About 200 military personnel – half of them drivers – have been deployed to the forecourt to help deliver petrol as about 22 per cent of filling stations in London and the south-east still do not have fuel.

PA. Additional reporting by

.

Credit: www.independent.co.uk /

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