To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, with reference to page 18 of the Motoring Services Strategy consultation, what (a) criteria, (b) process and (c) timeframe his Department plans to use to explore the possible privatisation of practical driving tests.
The Motoring Services Strategy was published on 12 May. As this document explains, we are exploring whether other models of service delivery might offer a better and more flexible range of services to road users, either as alternatives to the current arrangements or to complement them, including involving the private sector in delivering some or all of the services.
This is in line with the Government’s wider agenda to ensure that the driver testing and training regime prepares new drivers for a wide range of real life driving conditions and situations.
No decision has been taken about the preferred option or range of options, and we are committed to ensuring that, whatever model may eventually be chosen (including the option of retaining the present system), current standards of propriety and testing will be maintained. We are clear that road safety is our top priority and therefore the high quality and integrity of the UK’s driver testing regime must not be compromised by any changes to the delivery model.
We will work with DVSA, stakeholders and customer groups to assess the viability of those options with the aim of improving road safety.