7,000 trucks could be stuck at Dover for two days after Brexit transition

Freight lorries drive on to a ferry before leaving from the Port of Dover on June 12, 2020 | Ben Stansall/AFP via Getty Images

7,000 trucks could be stuck at Dover for two days after Brexit transition

Cabinet Office Minister Michael Gove warns that the biggest potential cause of disruption are traders not being ready for EU border controls.


9/23/20, 11:42 AM CET

Updated 9/23/20, 11:43 AM CET

LONDON — Up to 7,000 trucks carrying goods from the U.K. to the EU might face two-day delays in Dover after the Brexit transition, according to a leaked letter from U.K. Cabinet Office Minister Michael Gove.

In a letter to trade bodies seen by POLITICO, Gove warned that the government’s “reasonable worst-case scenario” forecasts two-day delays due to border controls regardless of the outcome of future relationship negotiations between the EU and the U.K.

The biggest potential cause of disruption, he wrote, are traders not being ready for controls implemented by EU countries on January 1, 2021. The British government estimates that between 40 and 70 percent of trucks traveling to the bloc on that date might not be ready for new border controls. In the case of trucks due to cross the Channel via Dover and Eurotunnel, the estimates range between 30 to 50 percent.

The lack of capacity at the French ports could force trade flows through the Channel to drop by between 60 to 80 percent compared to normal levels, Gove said.

“Simply put, if traders, both in the U.K. and the EU,

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