The freight industry has “cautiously welcomed” news that the UK government is to stagger import controls throughout 2020, but has warned that without an extension to the transition period, getting a trade deal will be crucial.“A recent survey of our members revealed that the majority believe an extension to the transition period is desirable if no trade deal is agreed by 31 December, and UK trade with the EU is conducted on WTO lines,” said BIFA director general Robert Keen.“With that option now off the table, we hope a trade deal between the EU and UK can be agreed before the end of the year.“Even with a phased transition for the new border processes, and the promise of an additional £50m investment in Customs IT infrastructure and training, we remain concerned on a number of issues, including recruitment of staff qualified and experienced in Customs procedures and the lack of available time to train newcomers, which is not a five-minute job.“In effect, we have a plan; but as always, the devil will be in the detail. For instance, how long will it take to build the infrastructure that the government recognises will be required?“And it remains to be seen whether the EU will reciprocate, with a similar phased transition for UK exports to the EU.”The UK Warehousing Association (UKWA) said the government’s ‘light touch’ approach was pragmatic.“We’re pleased that government appears to be listening, albeit somewhat late in the day,” said chief executive Peter Ward. “Preparation for full declaration on all goods by the end of the year would not have been feasible.”The government also said on Friday that it recommended using existing inland facilities for Customs and inspection checks, in order to relieve pressure on ports.“The government has finally acknowledged that multi-functional inland sites will be required for customs and SPS procedures and has committed to build the necessary infrastructure for inland inspection by the end of June next year,” added Mr Ward.“Our message is that, rather than spend taxpayers’ money on extensive state-of-the-art projects, existing facilities could be effectively optimised. Plenty of our members operate customs bonded warehouses and temperature-controlled facilities within reach of the major ro-ro ports. These companies have the experience, skills and labour to provide inspection services and would embrace the opportunity to expand their services. We look forward to further engagement with the government on this issue.”But he added: “As ever, the devil is in the detail. We are talking about highly technical and very complex processes; it is vital that the government consults thoroughly with those ‘at the coalface’ to fully understand all implications and a feasible timeline before committing to major change.”Tim Morris, chief executive of UK Major Ports Group, said a lot more detail, work and time was needed.“Even with today’s announcements, time remains short and businesses need to prepare rapidly. Less than 20% of the UK’s trade with the EU moves via trucks with drivers, so it’s vital than any government support covers all transport modes, such as containers and unaccompanied trailers, and locations. Of course, there are two sides to a border and knowing the EU’s borders requirements will be crucial.” By Alex Lennane 15/06/2020 © Craig McKay |
SEATTLE — Steve Goforth’s wait is over. On Sunday afternoon, the 37-year-old Everett firefighter and paramedic got the page he had been waiting months to hear. Click here to read more. Medical teams at the University of Washington Medical Center told him to report immediately so they could begin preparing him for a heart transplant. The surgery began around midnight. It took surgeons about five hours to complete the transplant, Gloria Wildeman, a family friend, said Monday evening. She said she spent part of Sunday in the waiting room with Goforth’s family. Goforth was diagnosed earlier this year with congestive heart failure.
NEW YORK | The NFL has picked Twitter to stream its Thursday night games.When the league negotiated its latest deal for Thursdays, it decided to sell the streaming rights separately for an “over the top” broadcast. This past season, it partnered with Yahoo to stream a game from London that took place on a Sunday morning in the United States.FILE – In this Nov. 19, 2015, file photo, Thursday Night Football sportscasters Bill Cowher, left, and Phil Simms broadcast from the set on the field before an NFL football game between the Jacksonville Jaguars and the Tennessee Titans in Jacksonville, Fla. The NFL has picked Twitter to stream its Thursday night games. When the league negotiated its latest deal for Thursdays, it decided to sell the streaming rights separately for an “over the top” broadcast. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack, File)Only the 10 Thursday games on CBS and NBC will be streamed through Twitter under a one-year agreement, the NFL announced Tuesday. They will be free worldwide on all devices through the Twitter platform. Viewers will not need to be registered Twitter users.The NFL Network-only Thursday games are not part of the deal.The league wants to experiment with digital broadcasts to see how they might fit into future strategies. In the meantime, this also offers a new revenue source with digital companies eager to get involved in live sports.So far, the audience for NFL streams has been significantly smaller than that for traditional television. The Yahoo broadcast of the Bills-Jaguars game from London in October averaged a worldwide audience of about 2.4 million. A Jets-Dolphins matchup from London earlier that month, which started at the same time, averaged more than quadruple that in the U.S. alone with 9.9 million viewers on CBS.The Bill-Jaguars game was available on TV only in the teams’ home market, whereas the Thursday night broadcasts are nationally televised.The London game took place at a time of day when fans might be less likely to find themselves in front of a TV. For “Sunday Night Football,” only a tiny percentage of viewers typically watch online. Those broadcasts are “authenticated,” which means fans must log in as a subscriber to a cable or satellite package. The Thursday night Twitter streams will be available free to any user.The NFL launched “Thursday Night Football” on NFL Network in 2006 with eight games, which grew to 13 by 2012. In 2014, the league partnered with CBS for a 16-game slate — half simulcast on CBS and NFL Network and half solely on NFL Network, with CBS producing all the games with its top announcing team. CBS received the rights again for 2015.In 2016 and ’17, CBS and NBC will each air five games, which will be simulcast on NFL Network. Another eight will be exclusively on NFL Network.