Final Agreement on the Reform Package for Road Freight Transport: Mobility Package I Must Now Be Put to the Test
Yesterday, the European Parliament gave a green light to the major road freight transport reform of the 1st Mobility Package. CLECAT welcomes a uniform legal framework for European road freight transport but warns against the unintended yet far-reaching implications of the new regulatory package for the transport and logistics industry.
“The result is a complex compromise, and it remains to be seen whether the agreement reached will lead to an alignment of competitive and social regulations, as well as to a more precise definition of market access conditions. This is why the implementation guidelines that the European Commission is currently preparing are of utmost importance for the industry,” said Ms Nicolette van der Jagt, Director General of CLECAT.
“Throughout a burdensome three-year-long legislative process, CLECAT campaigned tirelessly against some of the 1st Mobility Package provisions, as they will create more administrative burden for freight forwarding companies, their transport service providers and even enforcement authorities. The new rules will also put the ambitious environmental objectives of the European Commission at risk. We are therefore pleased that the Commission has initiated additional impact assessments of certain measures,” stressed Ms van der Jagt.
In particular, CLECAT regrets that the main industry concerns were not taken into account by the co-legislators throughout the negotiations. This relates to the inclusion into the agreement of the posting obligation for international transport, as well as generally unclear and hardly enforceable posting rules, the mandatory 8-week return of vehicles to the country of establishment, the 4-day ‘cooling-off’ period and other restrictions on cabotage operations, as well as the prohibition to spend the weekly rest in the cabin.
“All things considered, however, we appreciate that without any conclusions on the 1st Mobility Package different interpretations of the rules would continue to prevail among the Member States, leading to further internal market fragmentation and disproportionate national measures that hamper the free movement of goods in the EU,” acknowledged Ms van der Jagt. “While the results of the 1st Mobility Package are not necessarily satisfactory, its adoption will at least provide planning security for European freight forwarders and logistics service providers, as well as their customers,” she added.
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Ms Nicolette van der Jagt