A soft drink can on a nearly empty shelf in a London supermarket
Photo: Chris J Ratcliffe / Getty Images
Due to delivery problems with food and gasoline in the UK, the government has exceptionally approved 10,500 work visas for foreign professionals. This will bring 5000 truck drivers and 5500 poultry processing specialists into the country, as the Ministry of Transport in London announced on Sunday night. With the transitional arrangement, they should be able to work in the UK until Christmas Eve. The government hopes that the move will help replenish supermarket shelves and toy shops before the festival.
According to the Road Haulage Association, there is a shortage of around 100,000 truck drivers in the UK.
That is why supermarket shelves have remained empty over and over again in the past few weeks.
Recently there were also problems with the delivery of gasoline and diesel to filling stations.
Other branches of industry also complain of enormous gaps in the labor market.
One reason for this is the strict immigration rules since Brexit, which have made it difficult for skilled workers to move in.
Criticism comes from freight forwarders
The visas should be available from October, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said.
In addition, the government is relying on a package of measures in efforts to attract more truck drivers.
Among other things, it is planned that the army will assign driving instructors to deal with the enormous backlog of driving tests.
However, according to the European Road Haulers Association, the work visas are not enough to fix the delivery problems.
More is needed than a temporary relaxation of immigration regulations.
"There is a shortage of drivers all over Europe," said General Secretary Marco Digioia.
He's not sure how many of the drivers want to come to the UK.
tfb / dpa