I have secured support from cabinet ministers for the Keep Dover Clear campaign and for the continued exemption of hauliers from border control measures.
Dover faced significant disruption in December following President Macron’s decision to close the border with the UK, a decision which was criticised by the World Health Organisation and the EU Transport Commissioner. The border was reopened but lorry drivers are still required to present a negative test result before making the journey to France.
Following the Government’s announcement of new border measures last week, I asked the Home Secretary for confirmation that hauliers will remain exempt from the UK’s public health border measures and asked whether the Home Secretary will join her in ‘calling on France to follow the UK’s lead and remove unnecessary trade restrictions on the Dover-Calais route’.
The Home Secretary praised the ‘incredibly important’ work being undertaken to test hauliers to allow the flow of goods and freight to France but agreed with me that a proportionate approach is required, stating ‘we have good international practice behind us now, which is something that should be commended, but also something that should be shared with other countries’.
I pressed the Government further on this issue on Thursday in a question to the Transport Secretary, asking the Government to reaffirm its commitment to Keep Dover Clear so that whatever happens at the Port of Dover or is done by the French, people can get around to work, to school and in their daily lives.