The Road Haulage Association has welcomed news that Transport Minister Stephen Hammond, is setting out firm plans to introduce an HGV charging scheme which will mean that, for the first time, foreign trucks will pay to use UK roads.
The introduction by spring 2014 is especially welcome. This is a year earlier than set out in the consultation document and reflects strong lobbying by the RHA.
The RHA is pleased to see that VOSA will be targeting its enforcement in this area and the scale of the penalties available – £200 for a fixed penalty or deposit at the roadside; a Level 5 penalty of up to £5,000 upon summary conviction for failing to pay the levy.
“RHA members have expressed strong support for this scheme. One reason is the principle of charging foreign trucks to use UK roads. Another is the contribution it will make to addressing the cost disadvantage faced by British firms because of the very high level of diesel duty that they pay, which is much the highest in the EU,” said Director of Policy Jack Semple. “We recognise that this scheme achieves as much as can be done to level the playing field through road charging within EU law.”
All trucks must pay the new charge. It amounts to an annual rate of £1,000 for large vehicles, which is the great majority of foreign trucks. The charge will be deducted from UK Vehicle Excise Duty, so that there is little and in most cases no net impact on UK-registered truck operators.
“This is good news for British hauliers. We congratulate ministers on keeping this scheme firmly on track,” Semple said.