EU Commissioner Nicolas Schmit has highlighted a number of reasons as to why there have been empty shelves all across the UK. Mr Schmit believes that the problems which the UK has been facing can be blamed on the stricter rules for foreign workers which are in place in the UK.
Mr Schmit told Germany press agency DPA that the visa regulations implemented by the UK is “a direct example of how idiotic it is to say you will send foreign workers home”.
The EU would also experience the same issues which the UK has faced if worker mobility were curtailed, according to the Commissioner.
Since Brexit, the UK has brought in new, strict immigration rules to combat the number of people coming into the country.
According to Mr Schmit, the new rules have made employing workers far more difficult since Brexit.
The lorry driver shortage has caused panic all across the countries, with petrol stations and supermarkets both being affected by the shortages.
Containers at the Felixstowe were also left pilled up for a number of weeks – with the containers not being transported elsewhere.
The Government have committed to granting up to 5,000 visas due to the shortages in the country.
However, as of now, only a fraction of these visas have been issued.
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The changes to the rules will allow for hauliers who are transferring goods to pick up and drop off items an unlimited number of times for two weeks before they return home.
If passed, the new rules will come into force “towards the end of this year for up to six months”.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps told BBC Breakfast: “Having some additional capacity right now… it is a good idea. This is a quick way of doing it. It doesn’t require visas, it’s just a common sense measure.
“It is one of very many things. I don’t think it is going to undercut or suppress the market.”
Mr Shapps added: “It is very tight but our supply chain is pretty robust.
“They have worked through coronavirus and they will work through this as well.”
Additional reporting by Monika Pallenberg