More could be done to improve Scottish National Transport Strategy

Tuesday 11 February 2020

Pressure from FTA has led to significant improvements to the Scottish National Transport Strategy Publication (NTS2), released 05 February 2020, with the document now recognising the importance of the logistics sector to achieving sustainable Scottish economic growth. However, the business organisation is concerned that plans to phase out the sale of new petrol and diesel vans by 2032 are unrealistic without the right infrastructure in place.  

Mags Simpson, FTA’s Head of Policy for Scotland, comments: “As the organisation representing the logistics sector, FTA is pleased the Scottish government has amended the NTS2 to recognise the vital importance of the logistics industry to sustainable UK growth.  However, our members believe it is crucial that Scottish government reconsiders its plan to phase out the sale of new petrol and diesel vans by 2032. Until the issues surrounding power supply are rectified, it is unreasonable to expect that all new vans bought after 2032 will be electrically powered. The homes and depots where vans are currently stationed do not have sufficient power supply to charge the vehicles. And as companies do not control or own the power supply network, it is the responsibility of government to take urgent action to ensure the infrastructure is in place.” 

Mags Simpson continues: “FTA is pleased to see the government has recognised in its strategy that congestion on the transport network is a major concern for the logistics industry. The document outlines the significant impact disruptions to the supply chain has on businesses that rely on their goods being delivered on time, and to the level and quality expected by their customers. It is extremely encouraging to see Scottish government has understood the need for trade routes to be maintained/improved with direct links for freight and logistics routes to the continent. FTA is delighted to be continuing its work with government throughout the delivery phase of the NTS2 and expects long-term positive results for the industry.”  

Efficient logistics is vital to keep the UK trading, directly having an impact on more than seven million people employed in the making, selling and moving of goods. With Brexit, new technology and other disruptive forces driving change in the way goods move across borders and through the supply chain, logistics has never been more important to UK plc. A champion and challenger, FTA speaks to government with one voice on behalf of the whole sector, with members from the road, rail, sea and air industries, as well as the buyers of freight services such as retailers and manufacturers.