In a joint letter, 16 road transport organisations call on the European Parliament to complete the legislative process and adopt the Mobility Package as a matter of urgency. Amongst others, carriers from the Czech Republic and Slovakia joined the appeal.
Transport associations from Germany (BGL), France (FNTR), the Czech Republic (CESMAD Bohemia), Slovakia (CESMAD Slovakia), the Netherlands (TLN), Portugal (ANTRAM), Spain (ASTIC, CETM), Italy (CONFTRASPORTO, FAI) and Sweden (SA), Norway (NLF), Finland (Fin Mobility) and the NLA from the Nordic countries call on the European Parliament in a joint statement to finally approve the Mobility Package after three years of legislative work.
It is now essential that MEPs put an end to the distortions in the European road transport market resulting from the many different approaches taken by Member States. The Package will provide a more harmonised European framework, more efficient competition conditions and fairer competition between EU road transport companies,” we read in a statement made available by the German BGL.
“We can no longer afford to waste any more time while we face other major challenges such as digitisation, clean energy and clean road transport! The current crisis triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic is another reason to adopt a Mobility Package to ensure clarity and harmonised rules for road freight transport in Europe,” continue the organisations.
Today’s crisis clearly shows that well-functioning national freight transport markets are as necessary as cross-border transport to maintain the logistics chain and guarantee supplies to the population,” conclude the transport associations.
The provisions of the Mobility Package, supported by the West, are heavily criticised by industry organisations from Central and Eastern Europe. While they might contribute to the harmonisation of road transport rules in the European Union, they would reduce the competitiveness of many companies due to administrative barriers, which could lead to their collapse.
From the point of view of carriers from CEE region, this is the aim of the Mobility Package, i.e. to bury ‘unfair competition’ from the new EU countries. The Romanian transport association UNTRR has recently presented such an opinion on Twitter, triggering a strong reaction from German MEP Ismail Ertug, who is the author of part of the Mobility Package provisions on access to the profession and the road haulage and cabotage market.
Die @UNTRR, der rumänische Verband der Transportunternehmen, versucht mit einer Schmutzkampagne das #Mobilitätspaket aufzuhalten. Das wird aber nicht gelingen. Die LKW-Fahrer*innen haben drei lange Jahre auf bessere Arbeitsbedingungen gewartet. #MobilityPackage #FairWorkFairWage pic.twitter.com/0Uj4igOv9K
— Ismail Ertug MEP (@IsmailErtug) April 22, 2020
Ertug accused the association of a ‘dirty campaign’ and stressed the importance of the Mobility Package for truck drivers who have been waiting for three years to improve their working conditions.
In response, UNTRR suggested that this is the beginning of the extermination of the Romanian transport companies, and in Germany, only Romanian seasonal workers for asparagus harvesting are welcome, not truck drivers.