Welcome to our monthly Transport Update with all the developments you need to know about

Highlights this month include the first package of initiatives from the UK Shipping Office for Reducing Emissions (UK SHORE); the £40 million competition to commercialise autonomous vehicles; confirmation that sales of new non-zero emission HGVs will end in 2035 for smaller trucks and 2040 for trucks over 26 tonnes; a review of permitted development rights in Scotland to make it easier to install EV charging infrastructure; and a new Freeport for Wales.

Autonomous Vehicles
Commercialising Connected and Automated Mobility Competition

The Minister for Investment has launched a new £40 million competition to kick-start commercial self-driving services, such as delivery vehicles and passenger shuttles. The ‘Commercialising Connected and Automated Mobility’ competition will provide grants to help roll out commercial use self-driving vehicles across the UK from 2025 and is designed to help bring together companies and investors so that sustainable business models to be rolled out nationally and exported globally.

Flightpath to the future: a strategic framework for the aviation sector

The Department for Transport has launched a 10-point strategy to deliver an innovative and sustainable aviation sector as it recovers from the pandemic.  The plan, named ‘Flightpath to the future’, is a strategic framework for the aviation sector focused on how government and industry can work together to deliver a successful aviation sector of the future.

Terms of reference for the Independent CAA Review Panel

The Department for Transport (DfT) has published terms of reference for its Independent Review Panel. The panel is designed to complement other existing review mechanisms to ensure a person who has a legitimate complaint has an accessible and effective avenue to have it heard and remedied. The review panel is designed to improve transparency around decision-making and support best practice regulatory processes at the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA).

DfT publishes outcome of consultation on when to phase out the sale of new, non-zero emission HGVs

The Department for Transport (DfT) has published the outcome and response to its July 2021 consultation on when to phase out the sale of new, non-zero emission heavy goods vehicles (HGVs). The consultation explored when to end the sale of new non-zero emission HGVs in the UK and whether to increase the maximum permissible weights for zero emission and alternatively fuelled HGVs completing domestic journeys. Following on from this outcome, DfT has launched a second consultation on whether any HGVs less than or equal to 26 tonnes should be exempt from the 2035 phase-out date for the sale of new non-zero emission HGVs. These vehicles would still be subject to the 2040 end of sales date, when all new road vehicles sold in the UK must be zero emission. Consultation ends: 22 July 2022.

UK and Welsh governments reach £26 million deal to establish new Freeport in Wales

An agreement has been reached between the UK and Welsh governments to collaborate and deliver a new Freeport in Wales. Bidders must show how they will create high-quality employment opportunities offering good salaries and conditions and meet the governments’ shared climate change commitments to reach net zero by 2050. Further information will be made available and engagement with interested parties will take place before the bidding prospectus is published.

Review of permitted development rights - phase 2 consultation

The Scottish Government is carrying out a review of permitted development rights (PDR) as part of the wider planning reform programme. The PDR review is being taken forward in phases, with each phase focussing on specific development types. Through Phase 2 of the PDR review programme, the Scottish Government is seeking views on proposed changes relating to:

  • electric vehicle charging infrastructure;
  • changes of use in city, town and local centres; and
  • port development.
Road Network
ORR’s role and approach to RIS3

The Office of Rail and Road (ORR) has published a response to its December 2021 consultation on its proposed approach to assessing the challenge and deliverability of plans for the third road investment strategy - RIS3. Following an analysis of stakeholder feedback, the ORR has made several amendments to the policy including: clarifying the ORR's role and responsibilities within the RIS development process; highlighting the work the ORR intend to undertake to inform its advice regarding performance in the areas of environment and safety; and amending the ORR's approach to the planned RIS3 capability reviews which will inform its advice on efficiency.

Street manager and permit scheme changes – consultation response

The Department for Transport has published a response to the outcome of its consultation on further reforms to legislation covering utility street and highway authority road works including changes to permit schemes and to the data that needs to be provided to Street Manager.

Package of initiatives launched to decarbonise the UK maritime sector and transition to zero emission shipping

The Department for Transport has announced the launch of a package of initiatives to decarbonise the UK maritime sector and transition to zero emission shipping. Maritime Minister Robert Courts has confirmed a series of measures including:

  • the second round of the multi-year Clean Maritime Demonstration Competition (CMDC) to fund feasibility studies and pre-deployment trials in innovative clean maritime solutions;
  • feasibility studies exploring green shipping corridors, as part of the multi-year CMDC;
  • exploring initiatives on green shipbuilding skills in partnership with the Department for Education and their UK Shipbuilding Skills Taskforce;
  • working with the devolved administrations to support the greening of intra-UK ferry routes via a zero emission ferries programme;
  • plans to announce a Centre for Smart Shipping (CSmart) later this year; and
  • grant schemes for early research projects delivered by UK universities in partnership with the UKRI Supergen programme and marine industrial stakeholders.
Draft Regulations to implement the proposed Merchant Shipping (Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping) Regulations 2022

The draft Merchant Shipping (Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping) Regulations 2022 propose to implement the amendments to the International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW), 1978 into UK law. The Convention sets the standards of competence for seafarers internationally. In accordance with its international obligations, and as a party to the Convention, the UK is required to implement the amendments into UK law.

Seafarer minimum wage laws set sail

The Government has announced it is introducing pay protection reforms so that seafarers regularly entering UK ports are paid at least the equivalent of the UK national minimum wage. The new legislation will ban ferries that don’t pay their workers the equivalent to minimum wage from docking at UK ports.

UK/France: Agreement on Cooperation in Matters relating to Maritime and Port Security, and specifically, in relation to Passenger Vessels in the Channel

The Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office has announced an Agreement with the French Government on cooperation in matters relating to maritime and port security, and specifically, in relation to passenger vessels in the Channel. The Agreement is designed to build upon the cooperation in matters relating to maritime and port security between the Parties, specifically in relation to passenger vessels in the maritime area as set out in Article 3 of this Agreement, and to prevent and where necessary to counter any unlawful acts that may put the lives or the physical integrity of individuals at risk as referred to in Article 3 of the SUA Convention.

Key Contacts

Paul Hirst

Paul Hirst

Partner, Infrastructure Projects and Co-head of Transport
United Kingdom

View profile
Anna Sweeney

Anna Sweeney

Principal Knowledge Lawyer, Projects & Infrastructure

View profile