The British Vehicle Rental and Leasing Association (BVRLA) has launched a three-year plan to address the 'unprecedented' range of challenges facing the sector.
The plan includes recruiting extra staff to boost campaigning and training work, and increasing investment in research to allow the BVRLA to paint a clearer picture of what is happening in the industry.
Speaking to members and guests at the association's annual dinner last night, BVRLA chairman Matt Dyer said: "2017 has seen our part of the transport sector well and truly enter the limelight.
“The ‘demonisation of diesel’, a spotlight on motor finance and questions about vehicle rental security have all dominated media headlines and risen up the agendas of both the Government and regulators.
“These are not the only challenges that the vehicle rental and leasing sector has to deal with.
"In the midst of all this media and policy activity, the BVRLA has to plot the industry’s course towards a fairer motoring tax regime, a competitive model for sharing and monetising connected vehicle data and a sustainable market for electric vehicles.
“We need a stronger and better resourced trade association that can really fight the industry’s corner.”
Dyer went on to outline some of the key investments the BVRLA is making in staff, external support and infrastructure:
- Recruiting new staff to boost its campaigning, communications, governance and training work
- Working with external agencies to increase its constructive engagement with MPs, policymakers and local authorities
- Increasing investment in research so that the association can paint a clearer picture of what is happening in the industry
- Investing across its digital platforms to provide members with more useful and timely communications
- Tightening the requirements of its inspection regime and improving the level of feedback and support that is provided to members
- Rolling out a new e-learning platform and increasing the range of training and development opportunities on offer.
The BVRLA also announced that 2017 had been another positive year for membership, with growth in all its core categories.
The association ended 2017 with 931 members, who together own and operate almost five million cars, vans and trucks.