We recently covered Boris Johnson’s penchant for describing his achievements as world beating. In reality, his government’s track record is abysmal (which makes his obsession with being the best somewhat ironic). But even a stopped watch is right twice a day. There is one area that Boris Johnson truly is world beating.
Boris Johnson has constructed the largest lorry park in Europe in Ashford, Kent.
Boris’ World Beating Lorry Park
Ashford International Truckstop was opened on 7th December 2021. Why? Because hard Brexit has led to massive delays. Drivers have been experiencing 5+ hour waits to clear the bureaucratic mess he has created at the border. This transformed the “Garden of England” into the “Toilet of England” as drivers were forced to relieve themselves at the road side. Thus, the solution – build a lorry park.
Of course there was an alternative. The more obvious solution would have been to fix the border, so why didn’t this happen? In short, because that would require Boris Johnson to take responsibility for the first time in his life.
Brexit promised to eradicate bureaucracy. This was a lie. The impact of border chaos was called out repeatedly before, during and after the referendum. Despite this, Boris Johnson pursued the most damaging possible Brexit. The results have been far reaching, impacting almost every industry. COVID has made direct comparison impossible, but some of the more obvious impacts are:
- 18 mile long queues at the Dover crossing
- Regular waiting times at the border of 4 hours (although even longer delays have been reported by drivers on the ground)
- An additional £13 billion cost to business per year for navigating bureaucracy
- On average, this translates to 400 customs declarations per company, per year
- This amounts to 215 million unnecessary customs declarations in the UK per year
All this translates into rising prices for consumers, coming at a time when inflation is already at 5.5%. Conversely, the UK is now far less competitive. Again, the data has been muddied by COVID but in January 2021, border checks contributed to:
- Exports to the EU falling by c45%
- Imports from the EU falling by 33%
No matter whether you voted Leave or Remain, it is obvious that this version of Brexit delivers the worst of both worlds. For a man who is so intent on naming things after himself, I expect that he will soon try to distance himself from the damage he has caused. Let’s make sure this goes down in history as Boris’ Brexit.