DSLV: loss of Eastern European drivers has cut Europe’s road freight capacity by 7%

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An exacerbation of the driver shortage, as well as transportation bottlenecks and increasing transport rates - these are some of the knock-on effects of the war in Ukraine according to DSLV, Germany's transportation federation

DSLV: loss of Eastern European drivers has cut Europe’s road freight capacity by 7%
Photo credits @ Trans.INFO

A recent report in Germany’s most-read news site, Der Speigel, contained information regarding an internal document by Germany’s DSLV transport federation. The document detailed the effects of the war in Ukraine on transportation processes and supply chains.

According to the leaked document, HGV drivers from Ukraine, Poland, Belarus and Russia are much less available for the European market due to the war, and therefore, European road freight capacity has been reduced by up to 7%.

Since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine began, there have been numerous reports of Ukrainian HGV drivers working in Europe deciding to return to their homeland to defend it. Trans.INFO has already reported about the driver shortage crisis that Polish transport companies are facing due to the war.

“Due to the shortages on our labour market, about 105,000 people from Ukraine were employed as international transport drivers. Overnight, tens of thousands of them decided to leave Poland and return to their homeland. Our carriers were left without hands to work. At the moment, thousands of trucks cannot leave their bases and operate because there are not enough drivers on the market to replace those who have left,” states an open letter written by Poland’s International Road Haulage Association (ZMPD).

DSLV also took this trend into account in the aforementioned leaked document, but the association is also concerned about  disruptions in rail freight and sea freight traffic between Europe and Asia.

The rail connection via Ukraine to the east has been interrupted, but not yet via Russia and Belarus.

“Further hindrances […] on Russian territory can severely disrupt the procurement channels of European industrial companies and trading houses,” the paper says.

As a result of all these difficulties, DSLV counts on significant increases in transportation rates.

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