Motor trade fears transport strategy will bring job losses

JOB losses across the motor trade are likely if proposals for a new transport strategy are approved, the Guernsey Motor Trades Association has warned. 

An increase on fuel duty is one of the proposals included in the Environment Department's new traffic strategy.
An increase on fuel duty is one of the proposals included in the Environment Department's new traffic strategy.

And the association has called on deputies to back its alternative proposals, which include encouraging islanders to buy newer vehicles.

It would also like an MOT-type safety assessment introduced.

The proposals in the main strategy from Environment suggest a range of new taxes, including a 5p a litre fuel duty increase and new width and CO2 duties.

A minority report from two of its members includes the width and CO2 duties but a reduction in fuel duty. Its proposals also include paid parking .

Comments for: "Motor trade fears transport strategy will bring job losses"


In other news: Turkeys feel Christmas will bring existential misfortune.


I do not think there is any evidence whatsoever that job losses will occur as there is little evidence that the new taxes proposed will have much effect on persuading people to swap from the private motor car to walking, cycling or taking the bus.

On the other, if some of the proposals are eventually implemented, then more jobs will be created as more bus and taxi drivers will be needed, along with the jobs being created by the need for servicing the extra buses, the building and fitting of the new bus depot, the increase in park attendants etc and so on.

whogives atosh

Seriously its one bus each from now on....... we are broke so were gona raise taxes for all the poor people to pay a bit more, then when all the motorists cant afford to drive anymore they can get shelter at the giant new bus garage they paid for.... maybe get a few rabbits and live of the fat o the land, that's how its gona be!


I don't understand a CO2 duty, how much energy is required – and CO2 emissions generated – to transform a heap of raw materials, some of which are buried under the ground, into a brand new car parked up in the showroom ready for sale?

Surely driving around a 10 year old car (and keeping it for another 10) is actually better for the environment.

MOT assessments are pointless, and the only people suggesting it are those that would benefit from it. The speed limit is 35mph, not 70.



I think you are absolutely right. The amount of energy required to build a new car from scratch and get it delivered to the show room I think far exceeds the amount of energy that the vehicle will use in the course of its lifetime.

It makes sense to encourage people to buy less polluting vehicles and ones that are best suited to our local environment and narrow roads when new cars are being bought, but completely bonkers to suggest that we should all be trading up more frequently.

Local Dad

So the motor trade want more people to buy newer vehicles. Well surprise surprise surprise!

As for an MOT I used to support the idea but I've changed my mind. As you say all it will do is cost the motorist even more, line the pockets of GMTA members and provide precious little benefit to the community.

Of course if the GMTA proposed providing it as a free service to all their many customers as part of a corporate social responsibility initiative I might be tempted to do another u-turn.

Dee Sharisse

Absolutely, Jon. How many serious injury / fatal motor accidents in Guernsey are due to mechanical failure? I think you'll find that most are due to human error or other circumstances.

Charlie G

Yep,can picture it now,mass unemplyoment! Just love some of the headlines...."fears", "worries"...seems to me it dosn't take to much on our Island these days to send shivers through our hysteric back bones.....what evidence is there?

So we all go out to buy the latest full to the brim of gismos ,energy saving best so far car....thus pleasing the dealerships.Then the following year,we all go out to by the even more advanced energy saving best so far car...thus pleasing the dealerships.Then,the year after that,we all go out and buy the latest..yer yer yer,get the drift! Highly inteligent thinking to encourage us to keep stuffing up our roads with more and more vehicles....

And still...the buses trundel around our island,with empty stomachs,like dinosaurs looking for love!

Oh my dear Guernsey,what has become of ye!


The GMTA loses more credibility every time it speaks.

Keep ‘em coming.

Jon B

Guernsey Motor Traders speak with forked tongue.

It has been interesting to hear that the local motor traders are concerned about the increasing costs of car ownership on Guernsey. But I find it a bit confusing that in the same breath they suggest the introduction of an MOT which would represent the single greatest increase in costs for a motorist in recent history. Also, their concerns about the older vehicles emissions and the need to switch to modern cars would only result in greater emissions, greater expense and more profits for them.

The association seem to be concerned about the emissions of local vehicles, when in reality the island is home to many modern, low emission cars, and the emissions made by the older cars that remain in circulation represent such a tiny fraction of the island's carbon footprint compared to those made by the buses, or even the boats that supply the island as to be of no consequence. Their suggestion that there should be some kind of financial incentive for people to trade in their cars will only serve to sell more cars, put people into more debt and make the motor traders more profits. And that doesn't even take into consideration that the carbon footprint of making a new car is equivalent to 30 years of driving and old smoker!

As for the MOT, a fantastic money spinner for the trade. There is no evidence that poorly maintained cars contribute to a significant number of accidents on the island and the police have plenty of power to stop and issue tickets to the vehicles with defects. But there is a bigger issue with the MOT suggestion. Guernsey is home to large community of car and bike lovers. People who have one, or more, precious vehicles that they use on sunny days, or have spent years renovating. Is the suggestion that to be legal on the roads, all these more elderly vehicles get dragged out to a test station, costing owners whatever they decide to charge and put through a series of tests designed for modern vehicles. This will hurt a community of people who commit time and resources to keep older vehicles alive, the most environmentally friendly way to keep global emissions down.

If we base Guernsey's transport policy on the number of registered vehicles on the island, we are using the wrong numbers. The important number is how many people have driving licences on the island. That is a better representation of how busy the roads are. Guernsey roads do get a bit clogged up sometimes, often due to road works or an accident more than volume of traffic. It's never that bad and although there are one or two areas that could use some evolution, the buses, parking, things really aren't that bad, and whatever policy you put in place, you may reduce the number of registered cars, but not the number of licensed drivers. I can see no reason to undertake any huge changes other than to provide work for civil servants and motor trade. Some finetuning would be welcome, but Guernsey's money worries will not be fixed by further punishing the island's motorists.


Lets be honest here.. these people shouldn't have jobs anyway. they only have such a job because there are too many cars here. actually they should be grateful that the government is doing something for the islad and be willing to move to a new job.


What about tourists with cars - measure them at the port and send back if not narrow enough.



The motor trade it's self must contribute to job losses by pushing the sale of new cars! But they want the best of both worlds (MOT business as well) They are just nest feathering as usual (taking advantage of the motorist when they see the opportunity)


After reading and taking on board other readers comments about the upcoming measures on MOT's, the point of safety has sadly been over looked! Yes its a pain in the behind having to pay for yearly inspections, but, isnt that worth paying for the safety of other road users and more importantly pedestrians? Walking and cycling around in guernsey is a scary enough prospect as it is, never mind worrying about being knocked over by a poorly maintained vehicle that has brakes so bad, using your foot would be a better option. Fair enough the islands speed limet isnt that great, but, alot of damage can be caused at 35mph, esp with larger 4x4 vehicles and hgv's. Thats why MOT's would benefit all in the long run. Which brings me back to another point, I think the majority of the islanders wouldnt mind so much if the revenue raised by these inspections was channelled

into other schemes like helping subsidise smaller cleaner cars for road users cars and hybrid's that would usually be financially out of reach for alot of road users. Guernsey is tax exempt, so these small cars can be bought alot cheaper from the mainland and with help from the MOT subsidies, they could be bought for a fraction of there price. Theres no denying the roads in guernsey arnt adequate for larger vehicles, it doesnt take a rocket scientest to realise slim cars for slim roads makes complete sence. So if there was to be a taxation scheme to be introduced for the larger vehicle, then ones pay packet should be taken into account, so the less well off in society arnt the only ones penalised off the road with larger vehicles. The more wealthy you are the more you should pay in tax, then it makes sence for everyone to downgrade benefiting everyone.

Jon B

Its not that safety is overlooked, there's just no evidence that poorly maintained cars have caused more than 1 or 2 accidents in the last decade, and those didn't involve injury to persons. To inflict additional expenses on the already hard hit motorist based on no evidence is fundamentally wrong.

In the UK the government pay £5k towards the purchase of an electric vehicle, this is the sort of help that would get people changing. The problem is that you'll struggle to get the muppets out of their chelsea tractors.


An MOT says that the vehicle is safe on that day of testing, it could be unsafe a week later and for the next 50 weeks until the next year.


Why buy a new car there are plenty good used ones parked in disc parking areas. Buy them and parking problems solved. Car owners need to apply for a hawkers licence to sell on public areas.

The Environmental committee should sort this out before suggesting paid parking. Some motorist are abusing the system. Abandoned vehicles should be removed too.

Its cheaper to buy a new car with the warranty that comes with the deal and a decent financial package.

T Dawg

MOT has its for's and against's and especially on this little island where peoples perspectives are that we only do 35mph. Have a think for a minute, how many of you take your cars to the continent or the UK for holidays and travel, without knowing if your car is 100% capable of handling 70mph, and in most cases more.

I'd suggest it would be a mandatory thing to have your car MOT'd before travel, lets face it a car without MOT in the UK is illegal.

For on island use most people I know have their cars serviced regularly so this shouldnt cause too much of a problem if a mandatory MOT was carried out say every 5 years, and exceptions could be made if a car has been serviced annually by a garage or dealer thus preventing the risk of a mechanical fault.

I myself service my car when its due put would have no kwarms about having it inspected by an independent to give peace of mind more then anything.

Finally, would like to point out that PROFIT is not a swear word, a lot of comments have been made that dealers are pushing for new car sales and MOT to line their pockets, well they are in business to sell cars and ensure cars are safe on the road, pretty sure an MOT is the fraction of the cost of the average service. I think we should get off the dealers backs, as without profit they will no longer been in business thus creating job losses.

My comments are just food for thought so lets not over react, there are far more pressing matters to deal with


I’d admit there aren’t many accidents on the island due to mechanical failure, but I take my vehicles off island at least once a year so personally keep them in a condition that a 70mph failure is less likely!

There are other benefits to an MoT though. Such as checking your lights work, are aligned correctly, that you aren’t spewing voluminous clouds of black smoke on acceleration etc.. There are plenty of vehicles on our roads which shouldn’t be, you can normally hear them coming from the clack clack clack of a screwed CV joint or the exhaust dragging on the ground!

As to the cost, what is an MoT in the UK, about £40-£50? Not really that significant compared to the annual running costs of a car.

There are some valid points above about people with cherished cars etc. but they’re the ones who should be worried the least (besides the cost aspect) about an MoT test as their vehicles are probably kept in very good condition. It’s the ones owned by people who don’t understand anything about how a car works that you need to watch out for.

Islander “Its cheaper to buy a new car with the warranty that comes with the deal and a decent financial package.” Really? I run two cars, both well over 10 years old and my annual running costs for both cars (including petrol!) are less than the finance costs would be on even a run of the mill hatch back, add in depreciation on a new car and it really is a ‘no brainer’ to run an older car.