Baroness Vere, the roads minister, has written letters to the nearly 1m drivers with an HGV licence encouraging them to return to the industry.
“If you are no longer working in this sector, we would like to take this opportunity to ask you to consider returning,” according to the letter seen by the Grocer.
The Government also said on Thursday that the looser rules on drivers' hours had been extended until October 31.
A spokesman said: “This is a global problem and we have been working closely with industry for months to understand how we can boost recruitment. However we also want to see long-term solutions delivered by employers through improved testing and hiring, with better pay and working.”
Refinery workers threaten strike action
Fuel shortages could be intensified after unions at one of Britain’s biggest refineries voted “overwhelmingly” to strike in a pay dispute.
Workers at the Stanlow refinery near Ellesmere Port, Cheshire are in a dispute with owner Essar Oil over what they claim is a failure to honour a pay deal struck two years ago and the plans to close the final-salary pension scheme.
Almost half of the 900-odd staff at Stanlow are members of the Unite union. On Wednesday 98pc of them backed industrial action in a vote with more than 90pc turnout.
The 770-acre Stanlow site supplies a sixth of the country’s petrol and diesel and is owned by billionaire brothers Shashi and Ravi Ruia after they bought it from Shell in 2011.
Essar said it noted the strike ballot result and “welcomed the decision to engage in further talks and its agreement to suspend any industrial action while talks are ongoing”.
Separately, the petrol station operator owned by the Issa brothers said its 10,500 employees would get a pay rise of more than 5pc.
EG Group said all employees over 18 years of age would now be paid a minimum of £9.50 an hour, rising to £10 for more experienced employees such as team leaders and supervisors.
The higher rates will apply to all of EG’s petrol stations and food service brands from Friday.
Source : https://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2021/09/30/temporary-european-truck-drivers-paid-fifth/391