Former Transport Minister Chris Grayling had 100,000 jobs with a large UK port operator 46 minutes ago. (0 Comments) Posted by William Barns-Graham
Conservative Congressman and former Transport Minister Chris Grayling took on the role of advising Hutchinson Ports, operator of Harwich, Felixstowe, and London Thamesport, to earn a six-digit annual salary.
Grayling, known for having once signed a ferry deal with a shipless company, will work seven hours a week for the company, the BBC reported.
The watchdog, assessing potential conflicts of interest when the House of Representatives conducts non-parliamentary affairs, admitted that as a former Transportation Minister, Graylings’ knowledge had a perceived risk that Hutchinson Ports could gain an unfair advantage.
However, the Advisory Committee on Business Commitment approved the role after reassuring that Grayling would not advise on the commercial activities, risks or opportunities associated with the UK’s exit from the EU.
Its role is limited to advising the company on environmental strategy and engagement with local business groups, and Grayling should not lobby its fellow ministers on behalf of the company for two years.
No ship given
As Transport Minister in 2019, Grayling received widespread criticism for signing an agreement to provide additional transport capacity for no-deal Brexit results to a group of ferry operators, including companies that have never sailed the vessel.
The contract was later canceled, and the State Audit Office estimated that the cost of compensation to taxpayers would reach $56.6 million.
East Coast Harbor Up
Early in the summer, the government announced plans to strengthen Britain’s east coast ports, including Felixstowe and Harwich, to increase Britain’s trade resilience and reduce its reliance on the Port of Calais.
George Baker, founder of independent customs broker George Baker Shipping, told a July Daily Update that the strategy could return to excellence for ports in the region.
He said it would consider returning to companies like Harwich if the infrastructure was rebuilt to handle the massive customs processing surge that could arise as the UK left the EU single market and customs union at the end of 2020.
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