28 Feb 2024

Govt. reject mandatory Code for MOT centres

THE GOVERNMENT will not force new MOT stations to join an OFT-backed code, nor will it require existing ones to do so. This is according to the Department for Transport’s response to a recommendation published in a report from a focus group known as The Motorists Forum.

A recommendation of the focus group was that all new MOT garages ‘should sign up to an OFT backed code as a condition of entry to the MOT scheme. Existing MOT garages not covered by an OFT backed Code should be obliged to sign up as soon as it is practically possible.’

However, the DfT was clear that such measures would put an unnecessary burden on testing stations as well as creating a two-tier market.  The response said: “We do not accept this recommendation. While we strongly support wider adoption of OFT backed Codes we have a presumption in favour of market mechanisms and self-regulation rather than prescription.”

The response furthered: “MOT businesses are typically small in scale and there is a specific strong presumption against introducing new regulatory burdens for such micro businesses which could create an additional barrier to market entry” adding that VOSA already provides all of the regulation that test centres need.

Finally, the DfT stressed that if the proposal was implemented there would also be issues around equity. “Making code membership a requirement for new garages only would create a clear and immediate market distortion if different criteria are applied to new garages compared with existing garages.”

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