Girteka Logistics reveals how it will deal with the new EU Mobility Package

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Well-known Lithuanian haulage and logistics company Girteka Logistics has revealed how it intends to deal with the latest changes to EU Mobility Package, which are to enter into force in a matter of days. The haulage giant says it will have to increase prices due to the changes and hire more drivers. It will also open a base in western Poland so as to better serve its customers in Western Europe.

Girteka Logistics reveals how it will deal with the new EU Mobility Package
Photo: Girteka Logistics

In a press release on its website, Girteka Logistics said that the new Mobility Package regulations were set to make very significant changes to how cargo travels on the road in Europe. It said it was clear the changes would “make the industry better for its most crucial cog in the gears, namely the drivers,” but also be more complicated for industry representatives to organize road transport processes.

The company said the biggest change would be the fact that drivers will now have the option to return to either their country of residence or the place where a road freight transport operated is based every four weeks, with the truck having to come back to the place where the operator is based every eight weeks. Girteka Logistics also noted that Cabotage operations shall be restricted to three operations maximum per seven days, with a cool-off period of at least four days.

Another issue the haulage giant highlighted is the requirement for drivers to take their weekly rest periods of 45 hours in proper accommodation facilities, rather than the truck cabin. This, according to the company, “will add to the complexity of the incoming shift in the EU‘s regulatory base”.

The logistics and haulage specialist admits that the new rules are a “definitive improvement to the working conditions of the drivers,” but also chose to highlight “the issue is the lack of accommodation facilities throughout Europe, as well as current facilities hardly being able to accommodate the number of drivers and semi-trailers themselves.”

When it comes to the company’s reaction to the package, Mindaugas Paulauskas, CEO of Girteka Transport, chose to stress the company’s decision to set up a new base in Poland:

“Firstly, to be closer to our customers in Western Europe, we will open a base in Poznan, Poland, which should be fully operational by the end of 2022. The base has required a lot of investment in human and other resources, as we will have to refurbish it to satisfy our needs, and to ensure that the base will provide as much comfort for our drivers as possible,” commented Mindaugas Paulauskas, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Girteka Transport.

Paulauskas also said that the requirement to return the trucks and drivers to their base of operations or country of residence every eight and four weeks, respectively, shall require Girteka to hire more drivers.

“We also have to consider that if trucks and drivers need to return to their bases after a certain number of weeks on the road, these processes have to be monitored closely in order to not only avoid fines but to also ensure that we keep our high standards of services, despite any changes to the regulations,” concluded Paulauskas.

Another change the company will have to make, according to Pavel Kveten, the Chief Operating Officer (COO) of Girteka Logistics European Business Area, is to increase prices as a result of the cost of the Mobility Package.

“The Mobility Package, which will see the light of day in February 2022, will bring even more instability and a more volatile pricing environment, leading to even higher transport prices in Europe,” said  Kveten.

Providing more clarity on why costs will rise, Kveten added:

“it is the fact that trucks and drivers, on separate timelines, will have to return to their locations of registration and/or residence, possibly imbalancing trade lanes across the continents. Certainly, fuel, planning, and other operating expenses will once again grow, which will proportionally increase the prices for services in the EU. I have full confidence that our preparation work will enable us to continue offering the highest quality of services to our customers, despite the possible uneasiness we had expected for the upcoming months.”

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