The industry must present its Brexit wishes to government with a united voice in the lead up to the UK’s exit from the EU, MP Rob Flello has said.

Speaking at Motor Transport’s Brexit Debate earlier this week, the MP for Stoke-on-Trent South (pictured) said government would only listen to the industry’s needs if it could agree on what those needs were.

He told delegates: “This industry has got to have a single voice. Whatever discussions and passionate disagreements there might be, when it comes to talking to the government it’s got to speak with one voice.

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“I know from years of experience that when it [the government] has more than one voice coming at it from an industry, all it does is say: ‘if you can’t agree we’ll just do what we think is right’.”

Flello added that it was critical for industry representatives to be meeting and “arguing passionately, maybe coming from opposing angles to start with, but in the end to find common ground”.

This could be achieved if the industry’s trade associations took the lead, he said.

“The associations need to be consulting their members, as they do on a regular basis,” he said, “but then they need to have meetings like today and come up with agreed positions on tachographs, drivers’ hours and Driver CPC”.

The event, which took place at Scarman House, Warwick University, hosted a range of speakers from across the industry, who discussed their fears and hopes for Brexit.

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Rothera Sharp's Laura Newton

Panellists also discussed whether or not the industry should expect to see changes to legislation such as the Working Time Directive or Driver CPC. They unanimously agreed that the laws were unlikely to be scrapped.

Rothera Sharp transport and motoring law solicitor Laura Newton said: “A lot of EU legislation has been enshrined in UK law, so unless other legislation comes along before exit day, it [government] won’t remove those UK regulations that have already been implemented.”