Tag Archives: Transport policy

Competition in transport by rail, road and inland waterway

Competition in transport by rail, road and inland waterway

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Competition in transport by rail, road and inland waterway

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

Competition > Rules applicable to specific sectors > Competition in transport

Competition in transport by rail, road and inland waterway

Document or Iniciative

Council Regulation (EC) No 169/2009 of 26 February 2009 applying rules of competition to transport by rail, road and inland waterway.

Summary

This regulation repeals Regulation (EEC) No 1017/68 with the exception of Article 13(3) of that regulation, which continues to apply to decisions adopted under Article 5 of Regulation (EEC) No 1017/68 before 1 May 2004 until the date of expiration of those decisions.

As provided for by Articles 101 and 102 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) (ex-Articles 81 and 82 of the Treaty Establishing the European Community (TEC)), anticompetitive agreements and concerted practices, as well abuses of dominance are prohibited. This regulation applies to agreements, decisions and concerted practices which have as their object or effect:

  • the fixing of transport rates and conditions;
  • the limitation or control of the supply of transport;
  • the sharing of transport markets;
  • the application of technical improvements or technical cooperation;
  • the joint financing or acquisition of transport equipment or supplies where such operations are directly related to the provision of transport services and are necessary for the joint operation of services by a grouping of road or inland waterway transport firms.

Exception for technical agreements

The prohibition provided for in Article 101(1) TFEU does not apply to agreements, decisions or concerted practices which have the object and effect of applying technical improvements or achieving technical cooperation by means of:

  • the standardisation of equipment, transport supplies, vehicles or fixed installations;
  • the exchange or pooling, for the purpose of operating transport services, of staff, equipment, vehicles or fixed installations;
  • the organisation and execution of successive, complementary, substitute or combined transport operations, and the fixing and application of inclusive rates and conditions for such operations, including special competitive rates;
  • the use, for journeys by a single mode of transport, of the routes which are most rational from the operational point of view;
  • the coordination of transport timetables for connecting routes;
  • the grouping of single consignments;
  • the establishment of uniform rules as to the structure of tariffs and their conditions of application, provided such rules do not lay down transport rates and conditions.

Exemption for groups of small and medium-sized undertakings

This regulation also provides an exemption for groups of small and medium-sized undertakings, where the individual capacity of each firm belonging to a grouping may not exceed 1 000 tonnes for road transport or 50 000 tonnes for inland waterway transport (the total carrying capacity of any grouping must not exceed 10 000 tonnes for road transport and 500 000 tonnes for inland waterway transport). However, if the implementation of agreements, decisions or concerted practices has effects which are incompatible with the requirements of Article 101(3) TFEU, undertakings may be required to make such effects cease.

References

Act Entry into force Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal
Regulation (EC) No 169/2009

25.3.2009

O J L 61 of 5.3.2009

White paper: European transport policy for 2010

White paper: European transport policy for 2010

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about White paper: European transport policy for 2010

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

Transport > Bodies and objectives

White paper: European transport policy for 2010

This document aims to strike a balance between economic development and the quality and safety demands made by society in order to develop a modern, sustainable transport system for 2010.

Document or Iniciative

White Paper submitted by the Commission on 12 September 2001: “European transport policy for 2010: time to decide” [COM(2001) 370 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

Summary

The Commission has proposed 60 or so measures to develop a transport system capable of shifting the balance between modes of transport, revitalising the railways, promoting transport by sea and inland waterway and controlling the growth in air transport. In this way, the White Paper fits in with the sustainable development strategy adopted by the European Council in Gothenburg in June 2001.

The European Community found it difficult to implement the common transport policy provided for by the Treaty of Rome. The Treaty of Maastricht therefore reinforced the political, institutional and budgetary foundations for transport policy, inter alia by introducing the concept of the trans-European network (TEN).

The Commission’s first White Paper on the future development of the common transport policy, published in December 1992, put the accent on opening up the transport market. Ten years later, road cabotage has become a reality, air safety standards in the European Union are now the best in the world and personal mobility has increased from 17 km a day in 1970 to 35 km in 1998. In this context, the research framework programmes have been developing the most modern techniques to meet two major challenges: the trans-European high-speed rail network and the Galileo satellite navigation programme.

However, the more or less rapid implementation of Community decisions according to modes of transport explains the existence of certain difficulties, such as:

  • unequal growth in the different modes of transport. Road now takes 44% of the goods transport market compared with 8% for rail and 4% for inland waterways. On the passenger transport market, road accounts for 79%, air for 5% and rail for 6%;
  • congestion on the main road and rail routes, in cities and at certain airports;
  • harmful effects on the environment and public health and poor road safety.

Economic development combined with enlargement of the European Union could exacerbate these trends.

Road transport

– Objectives: To improve quality, apply existing regulations more effectively by tightening up controls and penalties.

– Figures: For carriage of goods and passengers, road transport dominates as it carries 44% of freight and 79% of passenger traffic. Between 1970 and 2000, the number of cars in the European Union trebled from 62.5 million to nearly 175 million.

– Problems: Road haulage is one of the sectors targeted because the forecasts for 2010 point to a 50% increase in freight transport. Despite their capacity to carry goods all over the European Union with unequalled flexibility and at an acceptable price, some small haulage companies are finding it difficult to stay profitable. Congestion is increasing even on the major roads and road transport alone accounts for 84% of CO2 emissions attributable to transport.

– Measures proposed: The Commission has proposed:

  • to harmonise driving times, with an average working week of not more than 48 hours (except for self-employed drivers);
  • to harmonise the national weekend bans on lorries;
  • to introduce a driver attestation making it possible to check that the driver is lawfully employed;
  • to develop vocational training;
  • to promote uniform road transport legislation;
  • to harmonise penalties and the conditions for immobilising vehicles;
  • to increase the number of checks;
  • to encourage exchanges of information;
  • to improve road safety and halve the number of road deaths by 2010;
  • to harmonise fuel taxes for commercial road users in order to reduce distortion of competition on the liberalised road transport market.

Rail transport

– Objectives: To revitalise the railways by creating an integrated, efficient, competitive and safe railway area and to set up a network dedicated to freight services.

– Figures: Between 1970 and 1998 the share of the goods market carried by rail in Europe fell from 21% to 8.4%, whereas it is still 40% in the USA. At the same time, passenger traffic by rail increased from 217 billion passenger/kilometres in 1970 to 290 billion in 1998. In this context, 600 km of railway lines are closed each year.

– Problems: The White Paper points to the lack of infrastructure suitable for modern services, the lack of interoperability between networks and systems, the constant search for innovative technologies and, finally, the shaky reliability of the service, which is failing to meet customers’ expectations. However, the success of new high-speed rail services has resulted in a significant increase in long-distance passenger transport.

– Measures proposed: The European Commission has adopted a second ” railway package ” consisting of five liberalisation and technical harmonisation measures intended for revitalising the railways by rapidly constructing an integrated European railway area. These five new proposals set out:

  • to develop a common approach to rail safety with the objective of gradually integrating the national safety systems;
  • to bolster the measures of interoperability in order to operate transfrontier services and cut costs on the high-speed network;
  • to set up an effective steering body – the European Railway Agency – responsible for safety and interoperability;
  • to extend and speed up opening of the rail freight market in order to open up the national freight markets;
  • to join the Intergovernmental Organisation for International Carriage by Rail (OTIF).

This “railway package” will have to be backed up by other measures announced in the White Paper, particularly:

  • ensuring high-quality rail services;
  • removing barriers to entry to the rail freight market;
  • improving the environmental performance of rail freight services;
  • gradually setting up a dedicated rail freight network;
  • progressively opening up the market in passenger services by rail;
  • improving rail passengers’ rights.

Air transport

– Objectives: To control the growth in air transport, tackle saturation of the skies, maintain safety standards and protect the environment.

– Figures: The proportion of passenger transport accounted for by air is set to double from 4% to 8% between 1990 and 2010. Air transport produces 13% of all CO2 emissions attributed to transport. Delays push up fuel consumption by 6%.

– Problems: To sustain such growth, air traffic management will need to be reformed and airport capacity improved in the European Union. Eurocontrol (the European Organisation for the Safety of Air Navigation) is limited by a decision-making system based on consensus.

– Measures proposed: Creation of the Single European Sky is one of the current priorities, due to the following measures:

  • a regulatory framework based on common rules on use of airspace;
  • joint civil/military management of air traffic;
  • dialogue with the social partners to reach agreements between the organisations concerned;
  • cooperation with Eurocontrol;
  • a surveillance, inspection and penalties system ensuring effective enforcement of the rules.

Besides this restructuring of the airspace, the Commission wishes to harmonise the qualifications for air traffic controllers by introducing a Community licence for air traffic controllers.

Alongside creation of the single sky, more efficient use of airport capacity implies defining a new regulatory framework covering:

  • the amendment of slot allocation in 2003. Airport slots grant the right to take off or land at a specific time at an airport. The Commission will propose new rules on this subject ;
  • an adjustment of airport charges to encourage the redistribution of flights throughout the day;
  • rules to limit the adverse impact on the environment. The air industry must get to grips with problems such as the noise generated by airports. The European Union must take account of the international commitments entered into within the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO). With this in mind, the European Commission recently adopted a proposal for a directive to ban the noisiest aircraft from airports in Europe. In 2002 the ICAO will have to take specific measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Consideration is also being given to taxes on kerosene and the possibility of applying VAT to air tickets;
  • intermodality with rail to make the two modes complementary, particularly when the alternative of a high-speed train connection exists;
  • establishment of a European Aviation Safety Authority (EASA) to maintain high safety standards;
  • reinforcement of passenger rights, including the possibility of compensation when travellers are delayed or denied boarding.

Sea and inland waterway transport

– Objectives: To develop the infrastructure, simplify the regulatory framework by creating one-stop offices and integrate the social legislation in order to build veritable “motorways of the sea”.

– Figures: Since the beginning of the 1980s, the European Union has lost 40% of its seamen. For all that, ships carry 70% of all trade between the Union and the rest of the world. Each year, some two billion tonnes of goods pass through European ports.

– Problems: Transport by sea and transport by inland waterway are a truly competitive alternative to transport by land. They are reliable, economical, clean and quiet. However, their capacity remains underused. Better use could be made of the inland waterways in particular. In this context, a number of infrastructure problems remain, such as bottlenecks, inappropriate gauges, bridge heights, operation of locks, lack of transhipment equipment, etc.

– Measures proposed: Transport by sea and transport by inland waterway are a key part of intermodality, they allow a way round bottlenecks between France and Spain in the Pyrenees or between Italy and the rest of Europe in the Alps, as well as between France and the United Kingdom and, looking ahead, between Germany and Poland.
The Commission has proposed a new legislative framework for ports which is designed:

  • to lay down new, clearer rules on pilotage, cargo-handling, stevedoring, etc.;
  • to simplify the rules governing operation of ports themselves and bring together all the links in the logistics chain (consignors, shipowners, carriers, etc.) in a one-stop shop.

On the inland waterways, the objectives are:

  • to eliminate bottlenecks;
  • to standardise technical specifications;
  • to harmonise pilots’ certificates and the rules on rest times;
  • to develop navigational aid systems.

Intermodality (combined transport)

– Objectives: To shift the balance between modes of transport by means of a pro-active policy to promote intermodality and transport by rail, sea and inland waterway. In this connection, one of the major initiatives is the ” Marco Polo ” Community support programme to replace the current PACT (Pilot Action for Combined Transport) programme.

– Figures: The PACT programme launched 167 projects between 1992 and 2000. The new “Marco Polo” intermodality programme has an annual budget of 115 million euros for the period between 2003-2007.

-Problems: The balance between modes of transport must cope with the fact that there is no close connection between sea, inland waterways and rail.

– Measures proposed: The “Marco Polo” intermodality programme is open to all appropriate proposals to shift freight from road to other more environmentally friendly modes. The aim is to turn intermodality into a competitive, economically viable reality, particularly by promoting motorways of the sea.

Bottlenecks and trans-European networks

– Objectives: To construct the major infrastructure proposed in the trans-European networks (TENs) programme, identified by the 1996 guidelines, as well as the
priority projects selected at the 1994 Essen European Council .

– Figures: Of the 14 projects selected in Essen, three have now been completed and six others, which are in the construction phase, were expected to be finished by 2005, states the Communication.

– Problems: The delays in completing the trans-European networks are due to inadequate funding. In the case of the Alpine routes which require the construction of very long tunnels, it is proving difficult to raise the capital to complete them. The Commission has proposed, in particular, completion of the high-speed railway network for passengers, including links to airports, and a high-capacity rail crossing in the Pyrenees.

– Measures proposed: The Commission has proposed two-stage revision of the trans-European network guidelines. The first stage, in 2001, was to revise the TEN guidelines adopted in Essen to eliminate bottlenecks on the main routes. The second stage in 2004 will focus on motorways of the sea, airport capacity and pan-European corridors on the territory of candidate countries. The Commission is looking at the idea of introducing the concept of declaration of European interest where specific infrastructure is regarded as being of strategic importance to the smooth functioning of the internal market.
The priority projects are:

  • completing the Alpine routes on grounds of safety and capacity;
  • making it easier to cross the Pyrenees, in particular, by completing the Barcelona-Perpignan rail link;
  • launching new priority projects, such as the Stuttgart-Munich-Salzburg/Linz-Vienna TGV/combined transport link, the Fehmarn Belt linking Denmark and Germany, improving navigability on the Danube between Straubing and Vilshofen, the Galileo radionavigation project, the Iberian high-speed train network and addition of the Verona-Naples and Bologna-Milan rail links plus extension of the southern European TGV network to N?mes in France;
  • improving tunnel safety by having specific safety standards for both railway and road tunnels.

On infrastructure funding and technical regulations, the Commission has proposed:

  • changes to the rules for funding the trans-European network to raise the maximum Community contribution to 20%. This would apply to cross-border rail projects crossing natural barriers, such as mountain ranges or stretches of water, as well as to projects in border areas of the candidate countries;
  • establishment of a Community framework to channel revenue from charges on competing routes (for example, from heavy goods vehicles) towards rail projects in particular;
  • a directive designed to guarantee the interoperability of toll systems on the trans-European road network.

Users

– Objectives: To place users at the heart of transport policy, i.e. to reduce the number of accidents, harmonise penalties and develop safer, cleaner technologies.

– Figures: In 2000 road accidents killed over 40 000 people in the European Union. One person in three will be injured in an accident at some point in their lives. The total annual cost of these accidents is equivalent to 2% of the EU’s GNP.

– Problems: Road safety is of prime concern for transport users. However, spending fails to reflect the severity of the situation. Users have the right to know what they are paying and why. Ideally, the charge for use of infrastructure should be calculated by adding together maintenance and operating costs plus external costs stemming from, for example, accidents, pollution, noise and congestion. Finally, non-harmonisation of fuel taxes is another obstacle to smooth operation of the internal market.

– Measures proposed:

On road safety, the Commission has proposed:

  • a new road safety action programme covering the period 2002-2010 to halve the number of deaths on the roads;
  • harmonisation of penalties, road signs and blood-alcohol levels;
  • development of new technologies such as electronic driving licences, speed limits for cars and intelligent transport systems as part of the e-Europe programme. In this connection, progress is being made on protection of vehicle occupants, on making life safer for pedestrians and cyclists and on improving vehicle-speed management.

On charging for use of infrastructure, the Commission has proposed:

  • a framework directive to establish the principles of infrastructure charging and a pricing structure, including a common methodology to incorporate internal and external costs and aiming to create the conditions for fair competition between modes.
    (a) In the case of road transport, charges will vary according to the vehicle’s environmental performance (exhaust gas emissions and noise), the type of infrastructure (motorways, trunk and urban roads), distance covered, axle weight and degree of congestion.
    (b) In the case of rail transport, charges will be graduated according to scarcity of infrastructure capacity and adverse environmental effects.
    (c) In the case of maritime transport, the measures proposed will be linked to maritime safety;
  • a directive on the interoperability of toll systems to be put in place on the trans-European road network.

On fuel tax, the Commission has proposed:

  • separating fuel taxes for private and commercial uses,
  • establishing harmonised taxation of fuel used for commercial purposes.

Other measures have been proposed to improve intermodality for multimodal journeys, in particular for those using rail and air successively, including integrated ticketing and improvements in baggage handling.

Related Acts

Communication from the Commission to the Council and the European Parliament, of 22 June 2006, on the mid-term review of the White Paper on transport published in 2001 “Keep Europe moving – Sustainable mobility for our continent” [COM(2006) 314 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

 

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

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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].

Summary

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.

Developing the Citizens' Network

Developing the Citizens’ Network

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Developing the Citizens’ Network

Topics

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

Transport > Mobility and passenger rights

Developing the Citizens’ Network

Document or Iniciative

Communication of 10 July 1998 from the Commission to the Council, the European Parliament, the Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions: “Developing the citizens’ network – Why local and regional passenger transport is important and how the European Commission is helping to bring it about” [COM (1998) 431 final- Not published in the Official Journal].

Summary

The Amsterdam Treaty includes sustainable development as one of the European Union’s objectives. Transport has a key part to play in achieving this goal. A well-functioning European transport system needs a good, sustainable local and regional passenger transport structure. This is primarily a matter for local, regional and national authorities, working with transport operators and users, amongst whom there is a high degree of consensus on the fundamental need to shift away from dependence on private cars and make transport systems more sustainable.

Practical methods of making transport systems more sustainable and shifting away from excessive dependence on private cars include:

  • raising the quality and accessibility of public transport services and increasing their capacity to respond flexibly to changes in transport needs;
  • making walking and cycling more attractive by offering more favourable conditions;
  • reducing the demand for travel, for example by reversing the trend for housing, jobs, schools, etc. to disperse to places which are hard to reach except by car;
  • removing psychological barriers to the use of alternatives to cars;
  • actively managing car use in congested areas;
  • making transport an essential component of strategies for spatial planning, economic development and social cohesion;
  • fostering new, flexible working time arrangements;
  • pulling all this together to create a door-to-door transport system which people can use as an integrated Citizens’ Network.

What is needed is then integration of travel services, facilitating less costly and effective door-to-door travel whatever the number of transfers or the distances involved. One of the key principles is intermodality, as it allows different means of transport to be used as part of seamless transport chains.

To support the role of local and regional passenger transport while complying with the principle of subsidiarity, the Commission has drawn up a three-year work programme covering four key areas:

  • Stimulating information exchange by developing a European Local Transport Information Service (ELTIS). This will consist of a database about local and regional passenger transport of all types, with information coming from the POLIS network of cities and regions and the International Union of Public Transport (UITP). Users will be able to consult the service electronically by using the worldwide web.
  • Stimulating the benchmarking of service performance to enable public authorities and transport operators to benefit from comparison of the performance of their local and regional transport systems with systems in other countries. In this respect, the Commission will present a Communication on benchmarking of transport. In addition, the European Commitee for Standardisation (CEN) intends to adopt standard definitions which can be used in setting quality criteria for passenger transport. From 1999 onwards, the Commission will seek to encourage widespread use of benchmarking by public authorities and operators. It will publish a handbook on benchmarking local public transport and ensure that a database of results obtained is widely available.
  • Establishing a political and legal framework which promotes increased use of local and regional passenger transport systems and helps to achieve the objectives of the European Union’s common transport policy with regard to efficiency, quality and sustainable mobility. The Commission plays an important part in the development of this policy framework. In land use planning, for example, it encourages good practice with regard to transport through instruments such as the trans-European transport network, regional policy, and cohesion policy. In transport telematics, it makes the most of the potential of telematics applications to improve the efficiency and quality of transport services and help to overcome obstacles to their integration. The Commission believes that information obtained through new telematics applications (in real time, accessible at home, at work and on the move) should cover as many different forms of transport as possible, including public transport routes and timetables, the degree of congestion on the road network, the availability of parking, etc. Making use of the potential of regional transport will also provide increased moblity for women, the disabled and the elderly, and help to reduce pollution, energy consumption and CO2 emissions from transport and make optimum use of public spending.
  • Using the European Union’s financial instruments effectively. The European Commission will manage these funds and programmes so as to optimise the potential contribution from a sustainable local and regional passenger transport system. In its review of the guidelines for the trans-European Transport Network (TEN -T), for example, the Commission is paying particular attention to the question of local and regional connections to the TEN-T (whether to include intermodal passenger terminals in the guidelines). The Commission has also included four actions of specific relevance to the Citizens’ Network in the first projects under the Fifth Framework Programme for Research and Development: Sustainable mobility and intermodality; Land and marine transport technologies; The city of tomorrow and cultural heritage; Systems and services for the citizen.

All in all, the Commission’s work programme is intended to provide practical assistance to numerous institutions throughout Europe which contribute to the development of local and regional transport for the citizens’ benefit: the public authorities, transport companies and user groups.

 

Action Plan on Urban Mobility

Action Plan on Urban Mobility

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Action Plan on Urban Mobility

Topics

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

Transport > Mobility and passenger rights

Action Plan on Urban Mobility

Document or Iniciative

Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions – Action Plan on Urban Mobility [COM(2009) 490 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

Summary

This Action Plan proposes a set of measures intended to ensure more efficient and more sustainable urban mobility.

Why an Action Plan on Urban Mobility?

This Action Plan meets the following needs:

  • the transport system must be competitive;
  • the European Union (EU) must fulfil its commitments in the areas of tackling climate change, growth and jobs, social cohesion, and health and safety;
  • urban areas must address demographic trends and social concerns (persons with reduced mobility, families and children);
  • urban mobility has a considerable impact on the efficiency of long-distance transport. Most long-distance transport starts or ends in urban areas, and urban mobility is thus regarded as an integral element of trans-European transport networks.

While reaffirming the principle of subsidiarity, the EU suggests improved European coordination. It also proposes to establish a coherent framework to accompany the measures taken at local level.

What is the role of the European Union?

The EU can encourage the different authorities (local, regional and national) to implement long-term integrated policies. In addition, the EU will assist authorities in finding innovative solutions and in sharing best practices at European level.

The main actions proposed by the Commission

The Action Plan proposes the following action themes:

  • Promoting integrated policies

Urban mobility policies must be linked to other policies concerning infrastructure, land use, social aspects of accessibility and mobility, environmental protection and industrial policy.

  • Focusing on citizens

Citizens must be at the heart of mobility policy. As such, passengers must be better informed and their rights must be better protected. In addition, the accessibility of urban transport for persons with reduced mobility is still insufficient. The Commission will also support campaigns intended to change citizens’ transport habits (walking or cycling, use of public transport, more energy-efficient driving, etc.).

  • Supporting greener urban transport

The Commission will continue to support the development of greener urban transport through:

  • the Seventh Framework Programme for research and development (for example, the CIVITAS initiative);
  • the European Green Cars Initiative.
  • Strengthening funding

The Commission must help authorities and stakeholders to explore funding opportunities, including through the Structural and Cohesion Funds and the Intelligent Energy Europe programme.

  • Sharing experience and knowledge

The EU will contribute to the collection and sharing of data and information on mobility actions. It will thus help cities with less knowledge and financial capacity to benefit from the experience of more advanced cities. The EU will set up an urban mobility observatory to accompany this approach.

At international level, the EU will work towards the exchange of information and best practices between EU cities and third countries.

  • Optimising urban mobility

The EU will offer assistance on:

  • improving logistics efficiency for long-distance freight transport in cities;
  • developing Intelligent Transport System  (ITS) applications for urban mobility.

Looking ahead

This Action Plan will be reviewed by the Commission in 2012. The Commission will then determine whether further actions are appropriate.

Context

This Action Plan meets the need to rethink mobility in urban areas. It should be made more efficient, more family-friendly and more environmentally-friendly.

Rights of passengers in bus and coach transport

Rights of passengers in bus and coach transport

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Rights of passengers in bus and coach transport

Topics

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

Transport > Mobility and passenger rights

Rights of passengers in bus and coach transport

Document or Iniciative

Regulation (EU) No 181/2011 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 16 February 2011 concerning the rights of passengers in bus and coach transport.

Summary

Subject to certain exceptions, this regulation applies to passengers travelling with regular services * for non-specified categories of passengers where either the boarding or the alighting point is within the European Union (EU) and where the scheduled distance of the service is 250 km or more. Some of its provisions apply to all services, including those of shorter distance. The provisions of this regulation will apply as from 1 March 2013.

The new rights applicable to long distance services (i.e. of more than 250 km) include, amongst others:

  • adequate assistance (snacks, meals and refreshments as well as, if necessary, up to two nights’ hotel accommodation, for a total amount of € 80 per night, except in case of severe weather conditions and major natural disasters) in situations of cancellation or following a delay of more than 90 minutes in the case of a journey of more than three hours;
  • guarantee of reimbursement or rerouting in situations of overbooking or in case of cancellation or following a delay of more than 120 minutes from the estimated time of departure;
  • compensation of 50 % of the ticket price following more than 120 minutes’ delay from the estimated time of departure, cancellation of a journey and if the carrier fails to offer the passenger either rerouting or reimbursement;
  • information when the service is cancelled or delayed in departure;
  • protection of passengers in case of death, injury, loss or damage caused by road accidents, particularly with regard to immediate practical needs in case of accident (including up to two nights’ hotel accommodation, for a total amount of € 80 per night);
  • specific assistance free of charge for disabled persons and persons with reduced mobility both at terminals and on board and, where necessary, transport free of charge for accompanying people.

Additionally, the following rights will be applicable to all services (including those below 250 km):

  • non-discrimination based either directly or indirectly on nationality, with respect to tariffs and contract conditions for passengers;
  • non-discriminatory treatment of disabled persons and persons with reduced mobility as well as financial compensation for loss or damage of their mobility equipment in case of accident;
  • minimum rules on travel information for all passengers before and during their journey as well as general information about their rights in terminals and online; where feasible, this information shall be provided in accessible formats upon request, in the interest of the persons with reduced mobility;
  • a complaint handling mechanism established by carriers and available to all passengers;
  • independent national bodies in each EU country with the mandate to enforce the regulation and, where appropriate, to impose penalties.
Key terms used in the act
  • Regular services: services which provide for the carriage of passengers by bus or coach at specified intervals along specified routes, passengers being picked up and set down at predetermined stopping points.

References

Act Entry into force Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal

Regulation (EU) No 181/2011

20.3.2011

OJ L 55, 28.2.2011

The EU and its neighbouring regions: A renewed approach to transport cooperation

The EU and its neighbouring regions: A renewed approach to transport cooperation

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about The EU and its neighbouring regions: A renewed approach to transport cooperation

Topics

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

Transport > International dimension and enlargement

The EU and its neighbouring regions: A renewed approach to transport cooperation

Document or Iniciative

Communication of 7 July 2011 from the Commission to the Council and the European Parliament – The EU and its neighbouring regions: A renewed approach to transport cooperation [COM (2011) 415 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

Summary

This communication sets out a renewed transport policy cooperation between the European Union (EU) and its neighbouring regions, following the 2007 Commission Communication on the extension of the major trans-European transport axes to the neighbouring countries which focused on infrastructure aspects. This communication outlines short (until 2013) and long term measures in all transport modes to link the EU transport system with that of its neighbours – both the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP) and the enlargement countries.

Aviation

The majority of ENP countries lie across the sea from the EU or at least a considerable distance away from EU capitals. Aviation therefore has a significant role in passenger transport. Short term actions proposed by the Commission in the aviation sector include:

  • complete ongoing negotiations and extend negotiations for air services agreements to other neighbouring countries;
  • continue to help neighbouring countries to modernise their air traffic management systems (SESAR) and join one of the European airspace blocks;
  • help neighbouring countries to achieve compliance with EU and international aviation safety and security standards.

The Commission also proposed the following longer term actions in the aviation sector:

  • consolidate aviation agreements with the eastern and southern ENP countries with the aim to complete the European Common Aviation Area (ECAA);
  • extend aviation safety cooperation under European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) to eastern and southern ENP countries;
  • extension of the Single European Sky to include neighbouring countries.

Maritime and inland navigation

A quality competitive maritime transport with a good environmental, safety and security performance is in the common interest of both the EU and its neighbouring countries, which have regional seas in common. In this communication the Commission proposes the following short term actions:

  • help neighbouring countries to improve their Flag State performance and comply with safety, security and social standards;
  • extend the scope of European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) to provide assistance to neighbouring countries;
  • promote the SafeSeaNet and CleanSeaNet systems to neighbouring countries;
  • work with neighbouring countries to simplify procedures for short sea shipping in line with the European Maritime Transport Space;
  • help neighbouring countries to achieve EU and international standards in inland navigation;
  • work towards the modernisation of the Danube Commission as part of the revised Belgrade Convention.

In the longer term, the Commission proposes to promote closer integration of the EU’s neighbouring countries to the “Blue Belt” of free maritime movement in and around Europe, intended to reduce administrative charges linked to EU maritime transport.

Road

Road transport is important for trade with neighbouring countries which share a land border with the EU. However, administrative burdens at the border crossings remain an obstacle to an efficient trade flow between the EU and its eastern neighbours. The Commission therefore proposes the following short term actions to improve road transport cooperation with the EU’s neighbouring countries:

  • assist the non-EU contracting parties of the UN Agreement on driving time and rest period rules in international road transport (AETR) in the deployment of digital tachographs;
  • seek a mandate for the EU to become a contracting party to the AETR in order to bring its provisions into line with the EU’s social rules in the road transport sector;
  • help neighbouring countries to increase their road safety;
  • study the impact of gradual road market opening with selected neighbouring countries;
  • improve customs cooperation with Belarus, Moldova and Ukraine to facilitate border crossings.

The Commission also proposes, in the longer term, to extend the scope of Interbus Agreement to include international regular carriage of passengers by coach and bus and enlarge the agreement to cover ENP countries.

Rail

The EU market for rail freight and international passenger services have been completely opened, enabling new competitors to enter the market. Rail freight could have a competitive advantage over other modes of transport, in particular on long Euro-Asian corridors, if the current physical and non-physical barriers could be removed, such as the lack of interoperable rail systems, insufficient technology, and inadequate cooperation on border crossings. The Commission therefore proposes the following short term actions in the rail sector:

  • minimise technical barriers to trade, such as the difference between the gauges used in the EU and its neighbouring regions which slows down freight and passenger transport flows;
  • promote the deployment of European Rail Traffic Management System (ERTMS) in neighbouring countries to ensure interoperability and safety of railways networks;
  • promote the participation of enlargement and neighbouring countries in the activities of the European Railway Agency (ERA).

In the longer term, this communication proposes the study and improvement of trans-shipment practices, and considers the possibility of an extension of the EU open rail market to ENP countries.

INFRASTRUCTURE CONNECTIONS

The Commission aims to improve and promote infrastructure connections by defining the networks, prioritising projects and mobilising funds. This would include, amongst various proposed actions, strengthening the Commission’s cooperation with the International Financial Institutions in the eastern and southern ENP and developing further maritime based connections through the Motorways of the Sea concept.

FRAMEWORK FOR IMPLEMENTING POLICY AND INFRASTRUCTURE COOPERATION

To lead both the policy cooperation and transport infrastructure planning, the Commission proposes to establish a Transport Panel under the Eastern Partnership which would set out a new approach for cooperating on all transport issues relating to the eastern neighbourhood countries. The Commission also proposes to sign the Transport Community Treaty with the Western Balkans, which would aim to establish an integrated market for infrastructure and land, inland waterways and maritime transport.

Africa and Europe: strengthening transport cooperation

Africa and Europe: strengthening transport cooperation

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Africa and Europe: strengthening transport cooperation

Topics

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

Development > African Caribbean and Pacific states (ACP)

Africa and Europe: strengthening transport cooperation

Document or Iniciative

Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament and to the Council of 24 June 2009 – “Partnership between the European Union and Africa – Connecting Africa and Europe: working towards strengthening transport cooperation” [COM(2009) 301 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

Summary

The communication promotes reflection upon how cooperation and the exchange of experiences can be improved to encourage the African Union (AU) to establish a safer and more effective transport system, including the extension of trans-European transport networks (TEN-T) towards Africa. The communication is therefore linked to the Euro-African partnership for infrastructure adopted in 2007. Within this partnership regional and national transport, water, energy, and telecommunications networks are interconnected throughout Africa.

The proposed measures are to be applied through existing instruments and cooperation between the European Union (EU) and Africa, in particular the Cotonou agreement, the European Development Fund, and the European Neighbourhood Policy.

The need for an EU-African transport cooperation

As the principle means of providing physical access to employment, health care and education, transport is essential to development and to the well-being of both rural and urban communities. The costs of transport in Africa are some of the highest globally and are particularly high in landlocked African countries; due in part to weak infrastructures, excessive administrative procedures, lack of appropriate governance and ineffective safety regulations.

An effective transport network is particularly important for landlocked countries. African transport networks must be developed when necessary for trade flow passing from ports towards these landlocked countries. By facilitating and improving transport flows between the EU and Africa, transport costs can be lowered whilst the sustainability and reliability of the transports services is improved. To achieve a genuine Euro-African transport network, there needs to be a coordinated approach with regards to the planning and implementation of infrastructure as well as an enhanced cooperation in the two principle modes of transport: air and maritime transport.

Aviation sector

The measures proposed by the Commission are designed to increase efficiency and long-term growth within the field of African air transport.

The AU encourages structured dialogue both between African organisations and between regional economic communities. This dialogue would develop the following areas:

  • air safety;
  • security;
  • modernisation of economic regulations;
  • environmental limits.

Maritime sector

Cooperation between the EU and the AU is needed to improve efficiency of African ports. The Commission proposes three ways for this to happen:

  • simplify regulatory aspects of customs and documentary procedures;
  • develop port infrastructure;
  • apply international standards (the international ship and port facilities security code – ISPS) to ensure port security.

In regard to environmental aspects, the Commission also suggest establishing efficient port installations to easier process waste from vessels in compliance with international conventions.

Development of a safer and more effective transport system

Issues of security and safety affect all modes of transport in both Europe and Africa.

Within maritime transport, it is important that countries in north and north-west Africa commit to combat the use by criminal organisations of overloaded small boats to transport illegal immigrants. This practice puts at risk the lives of thousands of people. Another issue is that of piracy, which currently represents an obstacle to the development of trade due to the lack of security in ports and along coastlines. The Commission therefore proposes that the EU:

  • assists in the administrative implementation of maritime regulations;
  • strengthens cooperation within its integrated maritime policy with Africa to encourage a heightened maritime surveillance;
  • promotes a more effective exchange of information with the relevant national authorities.

The Commission suggests that the opening up to air traffic from Africa should be accompanied by the reorganisation of air space and the network of air routes to ensure greater economic and environmental efficiency and safety.

Road is the principle mode of transport in Africa, in particular with regard to access to rural areas. The Commission therefore proposes guidelines in the field of road safety to be developed within national and regional administration:

  • create appropriate mechanism to promote the exchange of best practice;
  • encourage the allocation of European funds meant for the road network to specific measures designed to improve road safety;
  • promote the inclusion of road safety aspects in social impact studies for road investment.

The EU supports European cities in establishing integrated strategies for urban transport by means of the CIVITAS programme, within which cities are able to exchange ideas and good practice. The Commission proposes that this programme be extended to include African cities so that they can also benefit from these ideas and experiences.

Freight transport logistics in Europe

Freight transport logistics in Europe

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Freight transport logistics in Europe

Topics

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

Transport > Bodies and objectives

Freight transport logistics in Europe

Document or Iniciative

Communication from the Commission on freight transport logistics in Europe, the key to sustainable mobility [COM(2006) 336 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

Summary

Globalisation and EU enlargement to the east have created new challenges for European transport. The fast growth of freight transport contributes to the economy but also causes congestion, noise, pollution and accidents. At the same time, transport has become increasingly dependent upon fossil fuels. The communication from the Commission states that, without adequate measures, the situation will continue to worsen and increasingly undermine Europe’s competitiveness and the environment that we all live in.

The Commission therefore recommends modernising logistics to boost the efficacy of individual modes of transport and their combinations. In particular it recommends a better distribution of traffic towards more environmentally friendly, safer and more energy efficient modes of transport. The Commission plans to present an action plan on this subject in 2007.

State of the European logistics market

The global logistics industry is estimated at roughly EUR 5.4 trillion, or 13.8 % of the global GDP. On average, logistics costs account for 10-15 % of the final cost of the finished product. Although logistics is becoming increasingly important, there is a lack of reliable statistical information on the situation. Nonetheless, EU companies do increasingly recognise that there are competitive alternatives to road freight.

Linking logistics and transport policy more closely

The communication from the Commission reiterates the need to balance security (see [COM(2006) 79]) and the free flow of transport. It is in favour of dovetailing logistics into transport policy so that logistics becomes an underlying factor in decision-making.

The Commission proposes action in the following areas:

  • identifying bottlenecks. The Commission wants to identify bottlenecks in order to address these obstacles to the free flow of transport and logistics;
  • extracting value from information and communications technology networks. The Commission proposes linking systems such as GALILEO to logistics to track and trace cargo. Companies should also have easy, low-cost access to this technology. Logistics should thus remain a priority under the 7th Framework Programme for Research;
  • establishing European certification. Education and training in transport varies greatly in Europe. The Commission is therefore in favour of setting up a certification scheme for logistics specialists. Work in this field has already been undertaken under the Leonardo Da Vinci programme on vocational training;
  • developing statistical indicators. The Commission is keen to create a reliable picture of the logistics performance of the European transport market. To this end, it plans to work on devising suitable methodologies and indicators;
  • better use of infrastructure. Some situations create bottlenecks and undermine the free flow of traffic. However, building new infrastructure is not the only solution to the problem. The Commission considers that transhipment facilities, including seaports and airports, should employ modern technological solutions such as advance informatics. Rules should provide the appropriate framework for progressing this aspect;
  • recognising quality. The transport industry already uses a number of performance indicators or benchmarks to assess and control its service quality (air transport in particular). A quality label could be created and extended to logistics chains using other modes of transport;
  • simplifying multimodal chains. Flows could be simplified and assisted by a one-stop administrative interface where all customs formalities are carried out in a coordinated way;
  • promoting a regulatory structure or worldwide multimodality. Responsibility in international transport arises from conventions. Often they provide different rules for different modes of transport, which is an obstacle to using combined modes. The Commission therefore promotes the creation of a worldwide regulatory structure. The fragmented nature of liability regimes could also be relieved by the use of a comprehensive transport document;
  • establishing European loading standards. The rules on the dimensions of vehicles and loading units should match the needs of advanced logistics and sustainable mobility. The Commission has proposed common European standards for intermodal loading units. At present there are a multitude of different configurations, which increases the costs of intra-EU transport.

Background

In 1997 the Commission published a communication on intermodality, which underscored the importance of intermodality for making European freight transport more efficient and environmentally friendly. The text put forward a number of strategies to promote “sustainable mobility”, including the modernisation of logistics systems. It also announced that the PACT programme would be replaced by Marco Polo. In 2001, the mid-term review of the White Paper [COM(2006) 314 – Not published in the Official Journal] highlighted the importance of logistics. This communication places logistics at the heart of “sustainable mobility”.

Related Acts

Council Directive 92/106/EEC of 7 December 1992 on the establishment of common rules for certain types of combined transport of goods between Member States [OJ L 368, 17.12.1992].

Trans-European networks: towards an integrated approach

Trans-European networks: towards an integrated approach

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Trans-European networks: towards an integrated approach

Topics

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

Transport > Intermodality and trans-european networks

Trans-European networks: towards an integrated approach

Document or Iniciative

Commission Communication of 21 March 2007 to the Council and the European Parliament entitled: “Trans-European Networks: Towards an integrated approach” [COM(2007) 135 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

Summary

The trans-European networks (TENs) constitute an ambitious and essential objective for the competitiveness of the European Union and therefore for growth and jobs. Several major industrial programmes such as GALILEO, ERTMS and SESAR are following the logic of Europeanisation of transport infrastructures, often designed only according to national requirements.

Sustainable use of resources is a key element in TEN policy, since the most environmentally-friendly procedures enjoy a privileged status amongst the priority projects.

Assessment of TENs in 2006

The completion of 30 priority transport projects is behind schedule as the new, very costly infrastructures required have not been granted sufficient resources. The network is still incomplete, with investments of EUR 160 billion needed to finance the priority projects alone for the financial programming period 2007-2013. The European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and the Cohesion Fund remain the principal sources of Community intervention, and the European Investment Bank (EIB ) will continue to fund the infrastructures via its loans and a specific Guarantee Instrument.

The Community has recently adopted guidelines aimed at updating the trans-European energy networks (Decision No 1364/2006/EC). Some 42 projects, including 10 relating to gas networks, have been declared of European interest. The EU must invest at least EUR 30 billion in infrastructures between now and 2013. Between 2000 and 2006, approximately EUR 140 million was invested in the trans-European energy networks under the TEN budget. A figure of EUR 155 million has been earmarked for the financial period 2007-2013. The Commission has stressed here again, however, that the allocated amounts are limited in light of the issues at stake and actual requirements.

Investments in telecommunications are currently focused on modernising existing networks. The Commission has highlighted the disparities between urban and rural areas (already identified in its communication entitled Bridging the Broadband Gap) and invites the Member States to take concrete measures and define goals for reducing these differences by 2010. Public aid is encouraged in the event of market failure, in strict compliance with telecommunications and State aid regulations. A map of the infrastructures is needed to help the competent authorities assess their requirements and take advantage of ongoing civil engineering work.

Towards an integrated approach: the findings of the steering group

The steering group set up on 20 July 2005 at the request of the Commission has examined the possible synergies between the trans-European networks along with methods of funding and potential distribution. It has established that combinations of rail and road networks have shown themselves to be of significant value (more efficient use of space, reduced costs and environmental impact) and there are definite advantages in linking the two types of TEN. Synergies between the transport and telecommunications networks seem the most promising and ways of interconnecting the electricity networks are also worth exploring.

The steering group also underlined the potential environmental benefits of integrating the TEN. In fact, the 30 priority projects involving the trans-European transport network largely favour methods of transport which are more fuel-efficient and environmentally-friendly, such as rail or water. Interconnections between the national energy networks and connections with renewable energy sources will also optimise the use of available capacities in each Member State, thus reducing the environmental impact.

The steering group recommends:

  • continuing research into synergies between the TENs with the aim of producing and circulating a manual of good practices, and developing synergies between the objectives of cohesion policy and the priorities adopted in the TEN context;
  • evaluating the need for alternative solutions for availability payments over several financial periods and making appropriate legislative proposals if necessary;
  • monitoring the development of public-private partnerships and promoting this type of funding;
  • completing TEN priority projects on schedule while ensuring the application of environmental law.

New technologies

A midterm review of the 2001 White Paper on transport policy acknowledges the role of new information and communication technologies in ensuring that people and goods can travel safely and sustainably. Numerous schemes, including the Intelligent Transport Systems (ITSs), the European Rail Traffic Management System (ERTMS) and the European satellite navigation project GALILEO, represent effective tools for increasing safety and reducing congestion and environmental impact.

The group thus recommends that investments in the ITSs be integrated, from the early planning stages, into all new trans-European transport network (TEN-T) projects.

Legal clarification on non-cumulation of Community funds

The steering group concluded that there must be no possibility of cumulation of subsidies from several Community funds and has confirmed the need to maintain a consistent approach across the various legal instruments. Thus, when granting aid under the TEN arrangements, the Commission will check whether or not the projects have already received aid from the Structural or Cohesion Funds.

According to the steering group, delays in the priority transport projects are largely due to difficulties in reconciling the rules for granting Community subsidies from the TEN budget with the actual financial needs of the projects. The new TEN regulation should make it easier to part-finance the major cross-border projects, which are technically and financially complex.

The steering group also stressed the advantages of funding by public-private partnerships (PPP), and the benefits of a European Guarantee Instrument (provided by the EIB) to encourage the PPPs to fund the TEN-Ts. Such a system could help to lessen the risks linked to insufficient revenue during the initial years of operation of a project, and generate a considerable lever effect.

Based on the availability risk, PPPs will also form an integral part of the forms of subsidies eligible for Community financial support under the new regulation on transport and energy TENs.