Transport and storage 'hardest hit' by Brexit and Covid

10 June 2021

Transport and storage companies have been hardest hit by the double whammy of Covid-19 and Brexit, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

The ONS’s Business Insights report revealed in May transport and storage industries had the lowest percentage of businesses trading – 75% – following the impact of the pandemic and Brexit.

During 17-30 May, 9.6% of transportation and storage companies reported they had closed permanently.

A further 15% were still temporarily shuttered while just 75.4% had resumed trading – though this figure was up from a low of 67% when figures were first collated in June 2020.

David Jinks, head of consumer research at ParcelHero, said: “The report is obviously grim news for transport and storage companies. It also strikes a warning note for anyone hoping to see evidence of an economic recovery.

“The logistics sector is an indicator of the economy. When manufacturers and retailers are doing well, their transport providers are busy; similarly, when UK companies begin to struggle, transport and warehousing is the first sector to show an immediate decline.”

He added: “The root of the problem is that freight transport companies are particularly exposed to the impact of Brexit. This is on top of issues caused by the pandemic. It’s extremely concerning that customs problems have not got any better since Brexit regulations first hit in January.”

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