Welcome for new rail customs proposals

Rail Freight Group has welcomed the proposal to create new Railway Customs Areas at rail freight terminals, in a move that would avoid the need for a single border checkpoint after Brexit.

The Rail Delivery Group (RDG) made the announcement saying the proposals come in response to growing concerns over the likely congestion and disruption to the network that any single border checkpoint would create.

Maggie Simpson, Executive Director at the Rail Freight Group, said: “Moving freight by rail is good for the environment, reduces road congestion and is safer than by road. We’re committed to growing rail freight through the Channel for the long-term which is why we welcome the rail industry’s proposals and support their engagement with government.”

In a press statement the RDG said the rail industry wants to work with government to ensure smooth and efficient rail freight movement after we leave the European Union and avoid disruption to the over 2,000 intermodal trains transporting 1.22 million tonnes of freight per year.

RCAs provide new opportunities for businesses that import from Europe and don’t currently use rail freight to export, potentially reducing congestion on the road network.

Paul Plummer, Chief Executive of the RDG, said: “As we leave the European Union, the rail industry is united in wanting to secure imports through the Channel Tunnel and provide new opportunities for British businesses. Our proposals to create customs facilities at freight terminals support and complement the work ongoing in Government for customs controls post-Brexit and will prevent unnecessary congestion on the railway and clear the way for smooth trade with our partners in Europe.”

Hans-Georg Werner, Chief Executive of DB Cargo UK and Chairman of the RDG Freight Board, added: “Every day our trains move tonnes of produce, goods and materials which keep the shops full and businesses moving. We will work with government to find a solution which is financially sustainable and underpin the future of £1.7billion benefits of rail freight for Britain, providing opportunities for business across the country after we leave the European Union.”

Read the full press release here.