RHA members back Brexit

More than six in 10 members of the Road Haulage Association (RHA) are backing Brexit, according to a recent survey.

It found that 61% believe leaving the European Union (EU) would be good for business. Only 30% want to remain part of the EU, with 10% undecided.

Members wishing to leave said they felt the EU had increased the regulatory burden on them, while at the same giving foreign hauliers an unfair competitive advantage. Many also cited wider political reasons for their decision.

There is also concern over issues such as trucks from abroad crossing UK borders filled with cheap diesel to avoid paying fuel duty, while members also said that companies from outside the UK are able to hire cheaper labour, making it difficult for them to compete.

The survey also found that opinion is divided between smaller and larger hauliers. In the main operators with less than 65 vehicles favoured leaving (62% compared to 28% wanting to stay) while 80% of larger companies wanted to remain part of the EU.

Respondents also expressed frustration at what they see as a lack of clear unbiased factual arguments on both sides.

RHA chief executive Richard Burnett said, ‘The numbers speak for themselves. They show a very strong difference of view between SME and larger haulage companies. And it is a reality that a significant proportion of those saying they believe ‘Leave’ is in their best interests cite wider political reasons. It’s also clear that many of our members are frustrated by what they see as a lack of clear independent facts in the debate.’