The supply chain troubles caused by Brexit and the pandemic have been so bad for Satyan Patel that the shelves at his convenience store in central London are seriously lacking water and soft drinks.
A wide range of businesses have suffered through shortages for several months in the UK. But shoppers are also facing empty shelves for things as basic as water and milk at UK supermarkets and grocery stores.
The coronavirus crisis has severely disrupted the global supply chain, but Britain’s divorce from the European Union late last year has exacerbated the problem in the UK. Shops are not getting products delivered to them as rules making it harder to hire EU citizens has left haulage companies with a drastic shortage of lorry drivers.
Many people who returned to their home countries from Britain during the lockdown have not returned. According to recent estimates, the UK currently faces a shortage of about 100,000 lorry drivers.
Shortages of goods in the UK “will probably last for a while and may even intensify further”, according to a note by Capital Economics, a research consultancy.