Among the many hundreds of pages of Budget documents last week, a letter from Philip Hammond to the National Infrastructure Commission (NIC) is especially interesting. The Chancellor has asked the NIC to “undertake a study on the future of freight” and report its findings “in Spring 2019”. The NIC is asked to consider how to address issues around congestion, emissions and new technologies – but it is forbidden from looking at how Brexit might affect the country’s need for new freight infrastructure. In his letter, the Chancellor says that “issues relating to border controls and customs, and issues relating to the UK’s exit from the EU, are out of scope”.
The Chancellor’s letter in full is here: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/661457/Chancellor_letter_NIC_study.pdf