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Roadmap to a Single European Transport Area: Towards a competitive and resource efficient transport system

Roadmap to a Single European Transport Area: Towards a competitive and resource efficient transport system

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Roadmap to a Single European Transport Area: Towards a competitive and resource efficient transport system


These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Transport > Bodies and objectives

Roadmap to a Single European Transport Area: Towards a competitive and resource efficient transport system

Document or Iniciative

Commission White Paper of 28 March 2011: “Roadmap to a Single European Transport Area – Towards a competitive and resource efficient transport system” [COM (2011) 144 final – Not published in the Official Journal].


In this White Paper, the Commission sets out to remove major barriers and bottlenecks in many key areas across the fields of transport infrastructure and investment, innovation and the internal market. The aim is to create a Single European Transport Area with more competition and a fully integrated transport network which links the different modes and allows for a profound shift in transport patterns for passengers and freight. To this purpose, the roadmap puts forward 40 concrete initiatives for the next decade, explained in detail in the Commission Staff Working Document accompanying the White Paper.

The White Paper shows how we can achieve the transformation of our transport system, keeping our objective to reduce CO2 emissions by 60 % by 2050 through:

  • developing and deploying new and sustainable fuels and propulsion systems;
  • optimising the performance of multimodal logistic chains, including by making greater use of more energy-efficient modes;
  • increasing the efficiency of transport and of infrastructure use with information systems (including SESAR and Galileo) and market-based incentives (such as the application of “user pays” and “polluter pays” principles).

It also sets ten goals to guide policy and measure our progress inter alia on:

  • phasing out conventionally fuelled cars and trucks from cities by 2050;
  • shifting 30 % of medium and long distance road freight to other modes by 2030;
  • using cars for less than half of middle distance travel by 2050; or
  • halving road traffic deaths by 2020 and achieving near-zero casualties in road transport by 2050.

In order to implement the above goals, a genuine single European transport area needs to be established by eliminating all existing barriers between modes and national systems, easing the process of integration and facilitating the emergence of multinational and multimodal operators. A single European transport area would facilitate the movement of EU citizens and freight, reduce costs and improve the sustainability of EU transport. A transformation of the current European transport system will only be possible through a combination of initiatives at all levels and covering all transport modes.

In air transport, the initiatives include the completion of the Single European Sky, the deployment of the future European air traffic management system (SESAR), as well as revising the Slot Regulation to make more efficient use of airport capacity. In rail transport, the initiatives include the development of a Single European Railway Area, opening the domestic rail passengers market to competition, and establishing an integrated approach to freight corridor management. In maritime transport, the European Maritime Transport Space without Barriers should be further developed into a “Blue Belt” of free maritime movement both in and around Europe, with waterborne transport being used to its full potential. In road transport, the initiatives include the review of the market situation of road freight transport as well as the degree of convergence on road user charges, social and safety legislation, transposition and enforcement of legislation in EU countries.

The Commission also proposes initiatives concerning e-Freight, the EU approach to jobs and working conditions across transport modes, security of cargo and land transport. Proposed initiatives also aim to improve the safety in all transport modes, including civil aviation safety and the transport of dangerous goods.

Innovation is also paramount to this strategy and the EU recognises the need to promote the development and use of new technologies. The Commission therefore proposes a regulatory framework for innovative transport, including:

  • appropriate standards for CO2 emissions of vehicles in all transport modes;
  • vehicle standards for noise emission levels;
  • public procurement strategies to ensure rapid up take of new technologies;
  • rules on the interoperability of charging infrastructure for clean vehicles;
  • guidelines and standards for refuelling infrastructures.

One of the White Paper’s top priorities is to complete the trans-European transport network: TEN-T. This is essential for creating employment and economic growth because the network aims to provide a seamless chain linking all modes of transport – air, rail, road and sea.

Finally, to promote sustainable behaviour in EU transport, the White Paper puts forward the following initiatives:

  • promote awareness of alternative means of transport (walking, cycling, car sharing, park & ride, intelligent ticketing);
  • review and develop vehicle labelling for CO2 emissions and fuel efficiency;
  • encourage carbon footprint calculators, allowing better choices and easier marketing of cleaner transport solutions;
  • include eco-driving requirements in the future revisions of the driving licence directive;
  • consider reducing maximum speed limits of light commercial road vehicles, to decrease energy consumption and enhance road safety.

Road safety: Policy orientations on road safety 2011-20

Road safety: Policy orientations on road safety 2011-20

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Road safety: Policy orientations on road safety 2011-20


These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Transport > Road transport

Road safety: Policy orientations on road safety 2011-20

rd road safety action programme, the Commission has published policy orientations on road safety to provide a general framework, under which concrete action can be taken at European, national, regional or local levels from 2011 until 2020.

Document or Iniciative

Commission Communication of 20 July 2010 to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions – “Towards a European road safety area: policy orientations on road safety 2011-2020” [COM(2010) 389 final – Not published in the Official Journal].


Although progress was made on road safety in the European Union (EU) during the 3rd European road safety action programme (2003-10), the Commission highlights that efforts to improve road safety need to be further strengthened. This 3rd road safety action programme (RSAP) included an ambitious target to halve the number of road deaths by 2010 as well as numerous proposals for concrete actions in vehicle safety, safety of infrastructure and users’ safety. Although the Commission accepts that the initial target was not likely to be met by the end of 2010, the RSAP has encouraged EU countries to be more proactive in improving road safety and has gone a long way to dramatically reduce the number of fatalities on EU roads.

The European road safety policy orientations 2011-20 aims to provide a general framework and challenging objectives to guide national and local strategies, in accordance with the principle of subsidiarity. Within the general framework, the Commission highlights the need to:

  • create a cooperation framework based on the exchange of best practices across the EU;
  • adopt a strategy for injuries and first aid to address the need to reduce the number of road injuries;
  • improve the safety of vulnerable road users.

Principles and target

The Commission sets out three main principles:

  • striving for the highest road safety standards throughout Europe – by encouraging EU citizens to take primary responsibility for their own safety and the safety of others on EU roads, and by focusing on improving the safety of more vulnerable road users;
  • an integrated approach to road safety – through cooperation with other EU policy areas, such as energy, environment, education, innovation and technology, and justice.
  • subsidiarity, proportionality and shared responsibility – through the concept of shared responsibility, commitment and concrete actions at all levels from EU countries and their authorities to regional and local bodies.

Following the RSAP 2003-10, the Commission proposes to maintain the target of halving the overall number of road deaths in the EU between 2010 and 2020. This ambitious target demonstrates the EU’s clear commitment towards road safety and having a common objective is intended to provide EU citizens with a more uniform level of road safety within the EU. The Commission encourages individual EU countries to contribute to the achievement of this common target through their own national road safety strategies.

During the public consultation for these policy orientations, which took place between July and December 2009, a target for reducing road traffic severe injuries was proposed. Once a common definition exists for ‘severe injuries’, the Commission will propose to add a common “injuries reduction target” to these European road safety policy orientations up to 2020.

Strategic objectives

The Commission has identified seven objectives, for which actions will be proposed at both EU and national level:

  • improve education and training of road users – the quality of the licensing and training system needs to be improved, with emphasis on young drivers. The Commission will work with EU countries to develop a common educational and training road safety strategy including pre-test learning, the driving licence test, and post-licence training;
  • increase enforcement of road rules – the Commission, the European Parliament and the Council will work together to establish a cross-border exchange of information in the area of road safety. The Commission will also work towards a common road safety enforcement strategy which will involve enforcement campaigns, national enforcement objectives, and vehicle technology to assist enforcement, including the possibility of speed limiters in light commercial vehicles and alcohol interlock devices;
  • safer road infrastructure – the Commission will ensure that European funds will only be granted to infrastructure that complies with the EU safety requirements. The Commission will also promote the application of the relevant principles of safe management to the secondary road network of EU countries, in particular through the exchange of best practices.
  • safer vehicles – as well as continue to encourage the progress of vehicle safety, the Commission will also evaluate and propose actions in the area of harmonisation and progressive strengthening of EU legislation on roadworthiness tests and on technical roadside inspections;
  • promote the use of modern technology to increase road safety – the Commission will continue to promote the use of Intelligent Transport Systems to improve road traffic safety. The effectiveness and speed of rescue will be enhanced by the adoption of the European emergency call service fitted to vehicles, ‘eCall’;
  • improve emergency and post-injuries services – the Commission will propose the establishment of a global strategy of action on road injuries and first aid. The Commission will in particular examine the means to improve the efficiency of first aid intervention and post-care handling in order to reduce the impact of road accidents.
  • protect vulnerable road users – the Commission will work to improve the safety of motorcyclists, addressing behaviour, as well as vehicle and infrastructure safety. It will also encourage the establishment of adequate infrastructures to increase the safety of cycling and other vulnerable road users.

Implementation of the European road safety policy orientations 2011-20

A framework for open cooperation between EU countries and the Commission will be established to facilitate the implementation of the EU road safety policy. Parallel to this, EU countries should also develop national road safety plans including specific national objectives which are individual to their particular situation.

The Commission will pursue the improvement of the existing tools for data collection and analysis, such as CARE, the EU database on road accidents established in accordance with Council Decision 93/704/EC, as well as the European Road Safety Observatory (ERSO), which makes publicly available through the Internet road safety data and knowledge at European level.