RHA – Jungle closure a ‘short term fix’

While the Road Haulage Association (RHA) welcomes the closure of the Jungle camp outside the Port of Calais the RHA’s chief executive has said it is at best a ‘short term fix’ and that thousands of migrants are still travelling across Europe to reach French ports with connections to the UK.

“Of course we welcome the news that the camp is to be removed; this is something for which we have been tirelessly lobbying for many months,” said Richard Burnett, RHA chief executive. “However, it would be naïve to think that this will be an overnight success story. It is by far the end of the problem.

“Removing the camp is essentially a short term fix. It is crucial that we see an effective plan for a long-term solution.

“Over 6,000 migrants are now being sent to resettlement camps throughout France.”

“However, we are extremely concerned about the thousands of migrants that remain in Calais and the surrounding area – all still intent on reaching the UK at whatever cost.”

The Freight Transport Association has also had its say, rebutting French presidential candidate Alain Juppe’s comments that border controls should be moved back to Dover. The FTA believes they should remain in France.

Ever since the Brexit referendum the FTA has been calling for the so-called Le Touquet Treaty (in place since 2003) to remain in force. This allows the UK to carry out checks in Calais to stop migrants trying to reach the UK as well as the French to do the same in Dover.

Chris Yarsley, FTA’s EU Affairs Manager, said: “Moving controls back to Dover would cause cross-Channel chaos and would significantly impact on the frequency of crossings. The layouts of both the Port of Dover and the Folkestone Channel Tunnel terminal would need to be completely redesigned and the number of sailings and shuttles would be limited to the rate at which passport and immigration checks could be completed upon arrival.”

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