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Driving Licences (Foreign Acceptance)

Volume 929: debated on Monday 28 March 1977

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asked the Secretary of State for Transport in which countries which have a system of driving tests and licences the holder of a British driving licence is entitled to drive without any other licence or to obtain a local driving licence without taking any further test; and what steps he is taking to increase the number of countries that accept a British test and licence.

Anyone who holds a full British driving licence and who satisfies local requirements in relation to minimum driving age may drive, under that licence or an international driving permit, as a visitor to any country which is a party to the Road Traffic Conventions of 1926 and 1949. For residents the laws of each State determine the qualifications for obtaining its own driving licence. Nobody can obtain a full British driving licence until he has passed the British driving test, and my right hon. Friend cannot, therefore, ask other States to exchange British licences for their own without a test. He will, however, continue to support moves to secure the mutual recognition of driving licences provided it is based on minimum standards for driving tests and medical assessment.