France and its EU neighbors are encrypting to knock out a coordinated plan in response to a new strain of Covid-19 that has blocked trade and air travel to the UK and left hundreds of freight banks stranded outside the French border. France 24’s Herve Amoric submitted this report from Dover.
In the British port of Dover, hundreds of trucks are queuing almost still and can not leave after the EU on Sunday stopped trade and travel in the middle of the emergence of a new coronavirus strain. Concerns about the mutated strain have caused chaos for travelers, producers and freight companies for fear of major disruptions in supply chains just before Christmas.
For truck drivers stranded in Dover, there is little to do but wait.
A seafood driver on his way to France said he could not board a ferry but managed to get his cargo delivered via a company in Calais.
“There is a lot of extra commitment from finding companies and getting details and making sure the store and customers are there to get shipping off,” said Damian Doherty, a truck driver from Ireland, FRANCE 24.
European leaders, meanwhile, are expected to meet on Tuesday to work out a way to lift border restrictions with Britain, which may include requiring coronavirus tests on arrival.
The 48-hour blockade will come just as companies struggle to move products before the UK leaves EU trade structures on 1 January.
Large supermarkets have warned of a potential shortage of food before the Christmas party if the ban is not lifted soon.
Still, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has assured the public that supply chains are “strong and robust” with delays affecting only a “small proportion of food entering the UK”.