Source: ECG / IRU, 2020-09-25
A EU-UK deal is still possible and remains indispensable
Every year, more than 2.3m trucks travel back and forth between the EU and the UK. These vehicles are the life blood of our interconnected economies, supporting all sectors and industries by bringing raw materials, spare parts, supermarket supplies and finished products to their users and end consumers. As such, road transport is a trade enabler whose contribution goes far beyond its considerable direct economic and employment footprint.
Ending the transition period without an agreement between the EU and the UK is not an option for our industry. We believe reaching a robust compromise on a road haulage chapter as part of such agreement is both achievable and indispensable.
It is in the interest of all parties to allow heavy goods vehicles (HGVs) to move back and forth between the EU and the UK and transit through their respective territories in a way that is economically viable, without resorting to the reintroduction of haulage permits and quota systems that were never intended to cover volumes of trade as high as those currently taking place between the EU and the UK.
We strongly believe the way forward lies in a reciprocal solution between the EU and the UK based on mutual recognition of standards, competences and certificates to provide for adequate safeguards in terms of fair competition, environmental performance, road safety and working conditions for drivers. Road freight transport operators on both sides of the Channel are committed to operating to high standards in these areas.
Failing this, one would face a disheartening choice between a patchwork of fragmented national arrangements, and a world where the shortage of transport capacity on EU-UK routes is endorsed as official policy (quota of permits). Either option would be to everyone’s loss.
Time is of the essence. We call on negotiators to focus on their shared objectives - preserving road connectivity through balanced, reciprocal arrangements- and use the remaining negotiating time to deliver an outcome that is economically sensible and allows the road transport industry to play its role as an essential trade enabler across all sectors of the economy.
Signatories of the open letter
AEBTRI, Association of Bulgarian Enterprises for International Transport and Roads, Bulgaria
AFTRI, French Association of road haulage, France
AISÖ, Working Group of International Road Transport Companies, Austria
AMÖ, Federal Association of Furniture Freight Forwarders and Logistics, Germany
ANTRAM, National Association of Public Goods Road Transport, Portugal
ASTIC, International Road Transport Association, Spain
BGL, Federal Association of Freight Transport, Logistics and Disposal, Germany
CESMAD BOHEMIA, Association of Road Enterprises & Passenger Transport, Czech Republic
CESMAD SLOVAKIA, Association of Road Enterprises & Passenger Transport, Slovakia
CETM, Spanish Confederation of Goods Transport, Spain
CLC, Luxembourg Confederation of Commerce, Luxembourg
DTL, Danish Transport and Logistics Association, Denmark
ECG, The Association of European Vehicle Logistics, Belgium
ERAA, Association of Estonian International Road Carriers, Estonia
FEBETRA, Belgian Royal Federation of Transporters and Logistics Service Providers, Belgium
FIAP, Italian federation of professional hauliers, Italy
FinMobility, representing Finnish employers’ and business organisations in the mobility sector, Finland
FNTR, National Association of Road Transport, France
ITD, Association of Danish road transport of goods, Denmark
IRHA, Irish Road Haulage Association, Ireland
IRU, World Road Transport Organisation, Switzerland
LINAVA, The Lithuanian National Road Carriers’ Association, Lithuania
Logistics UK, United Kingdom
MKFE, Hungarian Road Transport Association, Hungary
NLF, Norwegian Road Transport Association, Norway
OFAE, Hellenic Federation of Road Transports, Greece
RHA, Road Haulage Association, UK
SVERIGES AKERIFÖRETAG, Swedish Association of Road Transport Companies, Sweden
TLN, Transport and Logistics, Netherlands
UICCIAA, Italian Union of Chambers of Commerce, Italy
UNTRR, National Union of Road Transporters, Romania
ZMPD, Association of International Road Carriers, Poland