Examination of the Problems Facing the Transport Industry

The transport industry is facing up to wide spread problems all the way across the board, from same day courier services through to heavy goods haulage firms. How the industry deals with these problems is a vital question in how we can move forwards beyond the difficulties posed by rising fuel prices, environmental concerns being levied on the industry and also the potential prospect of winters as harsh as the one that the UK recently experienced.

The recent cold snap has a massive effect on the transport industry, and continues to do so, as it presented multiple problems that courier services and those in the industry had to work around and deal with. First and foremost amongst these problems was the over-abundance of ice on the roads during this period. Many local councils were woefully unprepared for a winter as harsh as the one we had last, leading to salt supplies being much too low. This in turn led to many roads simply becoming unusable, especially in smaller suburbs or urban areas. Needless to say this had the potential to strike a crippling blow to the transport industry and, for many, it did just that. The industry, and Britain as a whole, was simply caught unawares by the difficulties posed by such a nasty winter, and this led to major problems for many businesses, however the transport industry was amongst the most prominently affected. Vehicles were forced off the roads and many companies simply had to shut up shop for a number of weeks, drastically affecting income.

This is something to we simply can’t afford to happen again, especially due to the potentially catastrophic effect it can have on smaller businesses and urgent courier services, who rely on their ability to get from A to B quickly. As such we need to ensure that local councils all over the country have adequate salt supplies should we face the same issues in the future. Not only this, but salt supplies need to evenly spread around. We, as an industry, simply can’t afford another winter like the one we just experienced and knowing that supplies could have been available in places that needed them simply rubbed salt into the wounds.

Some are attempting to take measures to minimize the impact of this problem. The Freight Transport Association (FTA) has already recommended a number of potential solutions to the problems that the industry faces from a harsh winter. Amongst these are the obvious, such as ensuring there are larger salt supplies available to reduce the time queuing at salt production sites.

Another, less obvious recommendation is to provide drivers with a little more leeway when it comes to their hours. The FTA calls for a greater flexibility in the handling of a drivers time on the road, as well as calling for a modest increase in the amount of time they can spend driving when they are able, to compensate for the periods during winter when they may be forced off the road.

This call, however, comes into direct conflict with recent rulings by the European Parliament (EP). An attempt to permanently exempt owner drivers from the 48 hour week imposed by the EP failed, meaning that soon self-employed courier drivers will now have to limit themselves to 48 hours of working per week, alongside the workforce that they may employ.

Singapore Employment Pass Important Requirements For Foreign Applicants

The Singapore Employment Pass is a visa issued to foreign businessmen, shareholders, managing directors, supervisors, and employees with specialized skills, according to the Ministry of Manpower (MOM).

To prove their eligibility, foreign applicants are required to provide MOM with these following documents and certificates:
Educational certificates, and if applicable, testimonials from their previous employers.

All the documents and testimonials should be in English, if not, these should be translated into this language by an authorized translation service.
A completed Employment Pass Application form which is downloaded from MOMs official website.

For professionals: In case that their employer is a Singapore-based company, they should be sponsored by this business entity. However, if their employer is an overseas company which does not operate a local office, they should get sponsorship from a local company which must sign the EP form and stamp this with its company seal.
A company should provide its latest business profile which must be registered to the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA). However, if a company is not yet registered to this agency, it should provide at least the registration papers from its respective professional body.

The applicants passport-sized photograph which must be taken within the past three months.

Relevant travel documents and passport particulars of an applicant.

It is important to note that MOM usually requires additional documents and certificates to foreign entrepreneurs. For example, they are required to secure an approval letter from the International Enterprise Singapore if they are planning to setup a representative office.

The approval letter should state the purpose of the application, duration of an applicants assignment, and activity for the maintenance and repatriation of an applicant.

Meanwhile, foreign professionals such as doctors, dentists, school teachers, nurses, lawyers, and pharmacists are also required to submit supporting documents provided by their respective accreditation agency or professional body.

Requirements for EP Applicants

One of the most important requirements is a college diploma from a reputable university. However, passing in this qualification does not guarantee a successful EP application since MOM also considers other factors.

For professionals, they should have several years of work-related experience, specialized skills, and at least a fixed monthly salary of S$2,500. And for businessmen, strong entrepreneurial skills and their companys reputation, background, and paid-up capital will determine their eligibility for this visa.

In some cases, MOM also considers an applicants age, roles and responsibility in a company, and current citizenship.