The International Road Transport Union (IRU) has released a report on the global driver shortage, which has been a long-standing issue in the transportation industry. The report provides insights into the current state of the driver shortage, its impact on the industry, and potential solutions to address the issue.
According to the report, the driver shortage has increased to an estimated 400,000 drivers in Europe alone, with similar trends observed in other regions. The shortage is spread across the continent, with some countries experiencing more severe shortages than others. Here is a breakdown of the driver shortage by country:
- Germany – Shortage of around 60,000 drivers
- France – Shortage of around 43,000 drivers
- United Kingdom – Shortage of around 60,000 drivers
- Italy – Shortage of around 23,000 drivers
- Poland – Shortage of around 50,000 drivers
- Spain – Shortage of around 15,000 drivers
- Netherlands – Shortage of around 7,000 drivers
- Belgium – Shortage of around 5,000 drivers
- Sweden – Shortage of around 4,000 drivers
- Romania – Shortage of around 10,000 drivers
- Lithuania – Shortage of around 22,000 drivers
- Hungary – Shortage of around 80,000 drivers
However, the report also highlights that the driver shortage is expected to increase to 1 million truck drivers by 2026, indicating the urgent need for action to address the issue.
The report notes that the driver shortage has led to several challenges for the industry, including reduced capacity, increased costs, and longer delivery times. These challenges have significant economic implications, particularly in the context of a global supply chain.
The report identifies several factors contributing to the driver shortage, including an aging workforce, low wages, and long working hours. Additionally, the profession is not viewed as attractive to younger generations, leading to a lack of new entrants into the field.
To address the driver shortage, the report recommends several solutions, including improving working conditions, increasing wages, and promoting the profession to younger generations. Additionally, the report suggests that skill mobility and relay trucking could help address the shortage by allowing drivers to work in different countries and reducing the time spent away from home.
The report also highlights the need for governments and industry stakeholders to collaborate in addressing the driver shortage. This includes investment in infrastructure and technology to improve efficiency, reduce costs, and promote sustainability.
In conclusion, the IRU report provides a comprehensive overview of the global driver shortage and its impact on the transportation industry. The report highlights the need for concerted efforts to address the issue and recommends several potential solutions. As the transportation industry continues to evolve, addressing the driver shortage will remain a critical priority for governments, industry stakeholders, and drivers themselves.