There is potential for chaos at British ports if the UK leaves the European Union without a deal, according to the London Evening Standard.
A new report from the House of Commons Public Accounts Committee has revealed that the Department for Transport (DfT) could be unprepared for a no-deal scenario, with time to plan for such an outcome running out.
The committee has also criticised the DfT’s approach to Brexit preparations as “complacent”, the department supposedly failing to ready businesses for the possibility of a no-deal outcome.
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A spokesman for the DfT has responded to the report, pointing to a provision for issuing haulier permits to truckers to carry on driving in Europe as one of several measures already in place.
However, the report has stated that there is “a real risk” that the DfT “will not be ready in the event of the UK departing the EU without a negotiated deal, and this risk is increasing as time runs out to deliver what is needed”.
The traffic management system on the M20 to ease congestion at South Coast ports, branded a “13-mile lorry park” by the Public Accounts Committee, has also come under fire.
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A further statement from the report read: “The slow progress and poor communication around work to avoid this through schemes such as Project Brock concerns us.
“The lack of detailed information provided to businesses to help them prepare and the secrecy surrounding discussions through the use of non-disclosure agreements is hampering businesses' ability to plan.
“With only months to go, it is extremely worrying that we are seeing these same concerns again and again with little progress being made.
“Even if a deal is agreed, the department faces a challenging workload during the proposed transition period.”