A business lobby has slammed European Union (EU) proposals designed to increase freight security against terrorist attacks. The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) says the latest EU security draft on enhancing supply chain security will hit small firms hard without producing any clear benefits. The proposal, should it be approved, will cost small business €55bn (£37 billion), the FSB say. EU Member states will be obliged to create a ‘quality label’ for security to be used on all freight transport including road, rail and inland waterways. Firms who can demonstrate there are no security gaps in the procedures will be awarded the status of ‘secure operator’ However, the FSB say this will involve a costly audit of both businesses and employees. The FSB are also annoyed the proposals will not apply to goods coming to the EU from abroad, or between EU member states, but only to items being transported within one country. Therefore, even small firms taking their products from Leeds to London will be affected, it suggests. Tina Sommer, FSB European affairs chairman, said: “A founding principle of the EU is the free movement of goods and people. “This proposal threatens to put a huge number of firms out of business, put up costs to the consumer and increase red tape on other companies. “It also directly contradicts this founding principle of the EU with no tangible benefit. “It must be dropped immediately.”

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