Freight, the future, and forward thinking

16 June 2022 #Uncategorised

A quick search reveals there are 156 mentions of infrastructure in the government’s new Future of Freight paper, published this week.

Not all of them relate to electric charging infrastructure, but ‘enabling the transition to net zero’ is a key theme of the multi-modal paper, so a reasonable proportion do.

While there is still also no specific talk of any public charge point target – something you may recall we have been calling for loudly – it’s obviously welcome to see this topic take a core role in the paper. Other requirements discussed include the need for decent borders, good warehousing (perhaps for when borders don’t work so well) and other infrastructure investment to ensure supply chain resilience, a watchword of the paper.

In a week when government grants for electric cars were scrapped entirely, but those for LCV remain, what does the paper say on incentives for trucks? It quotes from the Transport Decarbonisation Plan of last year and its commitment to: “Stimulate demand for zero-emission trucks through financial incentives.”

The quality of truck stops for overnight stays also gets mentioned, as does the ageing population working in the sector.

The image of a ‘boys club’ is likely perpetuated, the report says, by long hours, the need to be away from home and substandard overnight facilities.

The sights are aimed at haulage for recruiting less than 3% of its workforce from BAME backgrounds (the report’s phrasing) and less than 1% from the female half of the population, however. There is a gender pay gap of more than 10%, and 75% of women said it was easier for men to progress in their careers.

“Any sector that is failing to recruit from the entire population is more likely to run into labour shortages,” the report says.

A final word for those of you who may not have yet registered for our International Automotive Summit in London on Tuesday 28 June yet. Members get a free ticket for the conference which will, amongst other topics, discuss diversity in the automotive sector.




Update Newsletter