Fleet News

Businesses challenge Blair over white paper

BRITISH business has challenged Prime Minister Tony Blair to publish a radical integrated transport white paper later this month - including congestion charging - amid concern that the long-awaited document will be a damp squib. National newspaper claims that the white paper will be a 'watered down' version of what was originally envisaged have been attacked by The British Chambers of Commerce in a letter to the Prime Minister.

'Transport has to be a major priority for action: congestion costs businesses some £15-£20 billion each year. As such it acts as a major brake on business competitiveness and an unnecessary drag on the economy. The UK cannot afford not to tackle this problem,' said BCC deputy director general Dr Ian Peters.

As fleets balance running an efficient fleet operation with the continuing uncertainty surrounding future Government transport policies - which, it has emerged, could still be being formulated after the next general election, Peters said: 'We cannot afford to delay the introduction of such radical policies. Without the revenue raised from road charging the resources will not be available to make the step change we require in the provision of effective public transport.'

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