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As the logistics sector steps up efforts to aid the crisis in Ukraine, the UK and France have removed border controls and sanitary checks on humanitarian relief to keep trucks moving.
Aid shipments for NGOs assisting in humanitarian relief now need only be cleared under sealed conditions, but sources have told The Loadstar a lack of clear information on what is required led to “serious delays” at Dover over the weekend.
Morgan Cargo’s general manager, Storme Valentine, said: “We don’t want a repeat of the weekend, with food trucks stranded because they don’t know what’s required.
“We are able and willing to assist in providing the service and documentation for free to get the trucks moving out of the country to where they’re needed. We spent the last few days successfully clearing aid trucks for Ukraine.
“But we have been getting more and more feedback that there are serious delays and a lack of information out there for the haulage companies that wish to assist.”
Last week, the French government announced that “goods addressed for the benefit of disaster victims” moving under customs code 9919000060 would not be subject to SPS controls, reducing the required documentation.
Required is a packing list, the name and address of who organised the donation, EORI and the registered receiving charity’s details, the type of goods and the transport designation.
Once supplied with this, Ms Valentine said, suppliers, could provide hauliers with the required UK clearance paperwork, GMRs (outwards and return) for those without a GVMS, and the French smart border reference.
“We sent a few trucks over the weekend with no issues on a transit from Sevington Inland Border Facility,” added Ms Valentine. “And our French partners in Calais pre-cleared the trucks, so it was a case of reporting to the SIVEP in Calais to discharge the T1, and the trucks were free to leave for Poland. For those looking for support, please contact us on +441753 376 820.”
An RHA spokesperson told The Loadstar: “If anyone wants to contribute to the humanitarian effort then we’d recommend they’d get in touch with aid agencies like The British Red Cross, UNICEF and others who are co-ordinating a lot of this work.
“We can help firms who are moving donated goods across borders with customs declarations. They should contact us through: [email protected]”
For others wishing to donate, DB Schenker has opened a collection point in Cologne for donations to Ukraine, is opening a rail bridge with Deutsche Bahn to deliver humanitarian aid and has set up a hotline to register freight and coordinate collections. Transport is free of charge for donors. Phone: 030-720220640 or click on [email protected]
And Flexport is organising shipments of relief supplies to Ukrainian refugee sites across Eastern Europe. You can donate here.