Procedure : 2015/2005(INI)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected : A8-0246/2015

Texts tabled :

A8-0246/2015

Debates :

PV 08/09/2015 - 16
CRE 08/09/2015 - 16

Votes :

PV 09/09/2015 - 8.14

Texts adopted :

P8_TA(2015)0310

REPORT     
PDF 318kWORD 187k
29 July 2015
PE 551.935v03-00 A8-0246/2015

on the implementation of the 2011 White Paper on Transport: taking stock and the way forward towards sustainable mobility

(2015/2005(INI))

Committee on Transport and Tourism

Rapporteur: Wim van de Camp

MOTION FOR A EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT RESOLUTION
 EXPLANATORY STATEMENT
 RESULT OF FINAL VOTE IN COMMITTEE

MOTION FOR A EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT RESOLUTION

on the implementation of the 2011 White Paper on Transport: taking stock and the way forward towards sustainable mobility

(2015/2005(INI))

The European Parliament,

–       having regard to the Commission White Paper entitled ‘Roadmap to a Single European Transport Area – Towards a competitive and resource efficient transport system’ (COM(2011)0144),

–       having regard to the public hearing entitled ‘White Paper on Transport: taking stock and the way forward towards sustainable mobility’ held by its Committee on Transport and Tourism on 17 March 2015,

–       having regard to the European Economic and Social Committee Opinion of 22 April 2015 entitled ‘Roadmap to a single European transport area – progress and challenges’,

–       having regard to its resolution of 15 December 2011 on the Roadmap to a Single European Transport Area – Towards a competitive and resource efficient transport system(1),

–       having regard to its resolution of 6 July 2010 on a sustainable future for transport(2),

–       having regard to its resolution of 12 July 2007 on Keeping Europe moving − Sustainable mobility for our continent(3),

–       having regard to its resolution of 12 February 2003 on the Commission White Paper ‘European transport policy for 2010: time to decide’(4),

–       having regard to the Commission White Paper entitled ‘European Transport Policy for 2010: time to decide’(COM(2001)0370),

–       having regard to the upcoming COP21 Climate Conference in December 2015 in Paris,

–       having regard to the Energy Union Package and its Communication entitled ‘A Framework Strategy for a Resilient Energy Union with a Forward-Looking Climate Change Policy’ (COM(2015)0080),

–       having regard to the European Council conclusions of 23 and 24 October 2014 on the 2030 Climate and Energy Policy Framework,

–       having regard to the Commission communication entitled ‘A Digital Single Market Strategy for Europe’ (COM(2015)0192),

–       having regard to the Commission communication entitled ‘Together towards competitive and resource-efficient urban mobility’ (COM(2013)0913),

–       having regard to its resolution of 27 September 2011 on European road safety 2011-2020(5),

–       having regard to Rule 52 of its Rules of Procedure,

–       having regard to the report of the Committee on Transport and Tourism (A8-0246/2015),

A.     whereas the White Paper on Transport set an ambitious agenda for the transformation of the European transport system and the creation of a genuine Single European Transport Area;

B.     whereas the transport sector represents a driving force of the EU economy, employing around 10 million people and accounting for about 5 % of GDP, which should remain a frontrunner in generating further economic growth and job creation, and promoting competitiveness, sustainable development and territorial cohesion;

C.     whereas transport is a sector where Europe is a world leader, in both manufacturing and transport operations, and it is crucial that European transport continues to develop, invest and renew itself in a sustainable manner, in order to maintain its technological leadership at global level, continue exporting its standards worldwide and maintain its competitive position in all transport modes within a global economy ever more characterised by the emergence of powerful new players and new business models;

D.     whereas the premises of our society are changing as a result of digitalisation, urbanisation, globalisation and demographic change, and we need a shift in existing transport policy paradigms that can cope with the challenges of the future;

E.     whereas transport is fundamental to the free movement of people, goods and services, on which the single market is based, and free movement is both a powerful driving force for integration within the Union and a key factor in the performance of European industry and commerce;

F.     whereas transport continues to be nearly fully dependent on fossil fuels and is the only sector where greenhouse gas emissions have grown over the last 25 years, and without the recent economic downturn emissions growth could have been even bigger;

G.     whereas there is an urgent need to improve the energy efficiency and sustainability of the transport system and reduce its dependence on oil and fossil energy resources in a cost-efficient manner without sacrificing its competitiveness and curbing mobility, in line with the objectives set in the White Paper;

H.     whereas advanced sustainable biofuels, particularly those produced from processing waste and residues in line with the waste management hierarchy(6), represent an untapped potential for reducing the European transport system’s dependence on oil and for curbing greenhouse gas emissions from the transport sector;

I.      whereas it is essential to ensure the successful development of the Trans-European Transport Network (TEN-T) within the agreed time frames, to effectively link the transport networks of all EU regions, connecting the geographically peripheral regions to the centre of the EU, and to eliminate disparities between levels of infrastructure development and maintenance, in particular between the eastern and western parts of the Union;

J.      whereas investment in transport infrastructure has a positive impact on economic growth, job creation and trade, and it is therefore necessary to eliminate barriers which hinder private investment in transport infrastructure;

K.     whereas transport infrastructure generally requires long-term financing, and levels of investment have fallen in recent times owing to a lack of confidence among lawmakers, project developers and the financial sector;

L.     whereas there has for many years been serious under-investment in public transport infrastructure across the EU, and whereas improved facilities for pedestrians, elderly people and passengers with reduced mobility are part of Union's goals and require additional funds;

M.    whereas one of the main objectives of the White Paper should be to make people and their rights as passengers the central objective of transport policy;

N.     whereas innovation and intelligent transport systems should play a major role in the development of a modern, efficient, sustainable and interoperable European transport system that is accessible to all;

O.     whereas multimodal networks and the integration of different transport modes and services are potentially beneficial for improving passenger and freight transport connections and efficiency, thus helping to reduce carbon and other harmful emissions;

P.     whereas the creation of a genuine Single European Transport Area will not be possible without effective implementation of EU legislation by Member States and, where necessary, simplification of the existing regulatory framework to ensure legal clarity and improved enforcement;

Q.     whereas it is necessary to eliminate all the residual barriers, technical incompatibilities and burdensome administrative procedures that impede the achievement of a fully integrated transport system, and to oppose any new measures introduced by Member States which create barriers to the free movement of goods and services;

R.     whereas further market opening needs to go hand in hand with quality jobs and decent working conditions, a high standard of services and fair competition in all the Member States;

S.     whereas the last report from the Commission on Road Safety in the European Union(7) revealed that the number of road fatalities in Europe decreased by 1 % in 2014, a considerably lower figure than the 8 % drop recorded in 2012 and again in 2013;

Implementation and mid-term review of the White Paper

1.      Welcomes the Commission’s intention to carry out a mid-term review of the White Paper, with the aim of assessing the progress achieved and proposing further actions to reach its objectives; considers that, while it is too early to fully assess the impact of a number of policy measures taken since the adoption of the White Paper, a stocktaking exercise is necessary to obtain an overview of the state of play in the implementation of the 40 initiatives and 131 action points listed in its Annex;

2.      Reiterates its support for the targets set out in the White Paper and the ‘Ten goals for a competitive and resource-efficient transport system: benchmarks for achieving the 60 % GHG emission reduction target’; stresses that the mid-term review should maintain at least the level of ambition of the goals set in 2011 and propose concrete, realistic and evidence-based measures and initiatives to increase, speed up and streamline the efforts to meet them; calls on the Commission to evaluate the extent to which the list of actions set out in the White Paper is sufficient to achieve its overarching goals, and to propose additional legislative measures;

3.      Calls on the Commission to update the emission reduction targets in the White Paper in line with Parliament’s resolution of 5 February 2014 on a 2030 framework for climate and energy policies and the European Council conclusions of 23 and 24 October 2014 on the 2030 Climate and Energy Policy Framework, and to propose measures aimed at further reduction of transport emissions, in order to help Member States reach the overall ‘binding EU target of an at least 40 % domestic reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 compared to 1990’ (‘with the reductions in the ETS and non-ETS sectors amounting to 43 % and 30 % by 2030 compared to 2005, respectively’);

4.      Stresses that the 2030 reduction target for GHG emissions from transport should be set at a level that will allow the achievement of the long-term target of the White Paper of an at least 60 % reduction of GHG emissions from transport by 2050; calls in this context on the Commission to propose a comprehensive strategy for the decarbonisation of transport;

General principles: modal shift and co-modality

5.      Stresses that a European sustainable mobility policy needs to build on a broad range of policy tools to shift towards the least polluting and most energy-efficient modes of transport in a cost-efficient manner; points out that shifting the balance between modes of transport is not an end in itself but is necessary to disconnect mobility from the adverse effects of the present transport system such as congestion, air pollution, noise, accidents and climate change; acknowledges that the modal shift policy has not so far delivered satisfactory results; stresses, therefore, that all modes of transport must be optimised and become more environmentally friendly, safe and energy-efficient in order to achieve a high level of both mobility and environmental protection;

6.      Considers that the development of passenger and freight transport is largely dependent on the effective use of the various modes of transport, and that European transport policy should therefore be based on efficient co-modality, where the use of the most energy-efficient and sustainable transport modes should be prioritised where possible; believes that this will lead to an optimal rebalancing between the different transport modes, and will provide for interoperability within and between the modes, promote more sustainable transport and logistics chains and enhance seamless traffic flows across modes and nodes;

Modern infrastructure and smart funding

7.      Calls on the Commission to submit proposals to provide for the internalisation of the external costs of all modes of freight and passenger transport, by applying a common, coherent and transparent EU methodology and taking into account the specificity of each mode, including a coherent analysis of externalities that have already been internalised so as to avoid double taxation; calls for concrete measures to ensure a wider application of the ‘user pays’ and ‘polluter pays’ principles, including guidelines and best practices, and for a level playing field to be ensured between transport modes, abolishing environmentally harmful tax subsidies where appropriate, while maintaining the competitiveness of all EU regions;

8.      Calls on the Commission to propose a general framework for national road charging schemes for passenger cars and light commercial vehicles, which should be non-discriminatory for third-country residents and prioritise distance-based charging; invites the Member States to earmark the revenue from infrastructure charges for the building and maintenance of safe transport infrastructure and the mitigation of transport-related environmental problems;

9.      Emphasises that the completion of the Trans-European Transport Network remains one of the preconditions for a more sustainable, efficient, seamless multimodal transport system and a more balanced distribution of freight and passengers among transport modes; stresses that the selection of projects eligible for EU funding must focus on the nine core network corridors, the completion of missing links, in particular cross-border sections, the elimination of bottlenecks, the upgrading of existing infrastructure, innovative transport solutions, interoperability, and the development of multimodal terminals and urban nodes; it should also put greater emphasis on European added value, on the development of infrastructure for the connectivity of the peripheral, island, mountainous and outermost regions, and on support for projects connecting the Trans-European Transport Network with infrastructure networks of neighbouring and candidate countries;

10.    Considers that EU funding must reflect the real investment needs for completing the TEN-T core network by 2030, and that the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) instrument and other means of financing should stimulate investment in transport infrastructure following the criteria set out in the TEN-T guidelines and CEF, giving priority to sustainable means of transport such as rail, inland waterways and short sea shipping; emphasises that co-funded projects should reflect the need for infrastructure that benefits the Union in terms of competitiveness and economic, social and territorial cohesion, that minimises the impact on the environment, that is resilient to the possible impact of climate change and that guarantees the health and safety of users;

11.    Calls for a drastic increase in the funds allocated to the Connecting Europe Facility and for more European competences in the preparation, implementation and financing of transnational transport planning and infrastructure financing;

12.    Stresses that the quality of road infrastructure, which has a direct impact on road safety, differs significantly across the EU and that more than 90 per cent of road accident deaths in the Member States occur on urban and rural roads; stresses that efficient financing of this type of infrastructure must be further promoted through different EU policies and instruments, especially in the cohesion countries; stresses also the need for proper maintenance of the existing infrastructure, including the secondary road network;

13.    Stresses that the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), proposed by the Commission as part of the Juncker Investment Plan for Europe, should give priority to sustainable transport and to infrastructure projects of vital importance that deliver high societal, economic and environmental value, and should target projects that promote high-quality job creation, long-term growth, competitiveness, innovation and territorial cohesion, including sustainable urban projects and rail projects, in accordance with EU transport policy goals and legislation (TEN-T guidelines, CEF); in this context, new ways of funding such as public-private partnerships and concessions deserve more attention and application; stresses that the process for selecting projects to be funded by EFSI should be transparent and involve relevant stakeholders from the public and private sector;

14.    Considers that EFSI should be funded as a priority from non-allocated resources within the EU budget and only as a last resort from the non-used funds of programmes under heading 1A of the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) 2014-2020; emphasises that the financing of the guarantee fund should be reviewed in the framework of the 2016 mid-term review of the MFF and, on the basis of the analysis of the performance and execution rates of the different programmes, alternative funding options should be identified in order to minimise to the greatest possible extent redeployment of funds from heading 1A for the 2016-2020 period; stresses that the European Parliament and the Council should also explore ways to compensate to the largest possible extent for redeployments from EU programmes agreed in the framework of the annual budgetary procedure as a source of financing for EFSI in the years preceding the MFF mid-term review;

15.    Reaffirms its support for innovative financial instruments that allow public spending to be optimised by better mobilisation of private financing, but recalls that many projects in the transport sector do not generate enough revenue to rely exclusively on these types of instrument, and thus require support in the form of subsidies;

16.    Stresses that the rapid deployment and application of intelligent transport systems is necessary to allow a more efficient, sustainable and safe use of vehicles and of the existing infrastructure and to provide additional capacity without the time, cost and land-take required for the construction of new infrastructure; stresses the importance of effective use of frequencies and interoperability between intelligent transport systems to enable seamless traffic flows across modes and nodes; calls for the timely implementation of the deployment and exploitation phases of the EU Satellite Navigation Programmes, and the effective development of transport applications within the Galileo and EGNOS systems;

Sustainable transport and urban mobility

17.    Stresses that improving energy efficiency should be one of the top priorities of the European transport policy; states that there is an acute need to improve the resource efficiency of the transport system as a whole, with a view to more efficient use of existing capacity, improving the utilisation rate of vehicles and ensuring that public financing is allocated at national and EU level to measures with the highest impact;

18.    Emphasises the importance of promoting electro-mobility and electric public transport systems, coupled with the introduction of renewable energy sources in the electricity sector, giving priority to the further electrification of the rail network and the promotion of tramways, electric buses (trolleybuses), electric cars, electric two-/three-/four- wheelers, e-bikes and small electric boats; stresses the potential of modern aerial tramways (cable cars), as an inexpensive and easy-to-build means of transportation, to expand the capacity of urban public transport systems;

19.    Emphasises the importance of promoting the introduction of alternative fuels and propulsion systems, in particular those for which Europe has a major technological advantage, in order to reduce transport’s dependence on fossil fuels, improve air quality and reduce greenhouse gas emissions; deplores the fact that those technologies have still not been sufficiently deployed, especially in public transport;

20.    Notes that public transport usage in urban areas is not clearly stated among the ten goals of the White Paper; believes that a new goal should be set of doubling public transport use in urban areas by 2030; stresses in that regard that measures should be taken to provide for facilities and infrastructure to facilitate safe door-to-door mobility of public transport users, including elderly or disabled people and cyclists who use public transport for part of their ride; underlines that achieving this goal requires appropriate investment, especially in order to ensure consistent maintenance and expansion of public transport infrastructure; urges the Member States, therefore, to provide adequate, long-term, reliable funding for urban public transport infrastructure projects;

21.    Calls on the Commission to assist local, regional and national authorities and stakeholders to explore existing and new EU funding opportunities for public transport and develop innovative public-private partnership schemes; draws attention to the lessons to be learnt from the European Court of Auditors special report (No 1/2014) entitled ‘Effectiveness of EU-supported public urban transport projects’, which assessed the implementation and effectiveness of urban public transport projects co-financed by EU structural funds and the extent to which they meet user needs and achieve their objectives in terms of utilisation;

22.    Emphasises the importance of Sustainable Urban Mobility Plans (SUMPs) as a tool to help cities make more efficient use of transport infrastructure and services and improve integration into the urban area of the different mobility modes in a sustainable manner, thereby contributing to the reduction of air and noise pollution, CO2 emissions, congestion and road accidents; calls on the Commission to continue supporting the development and promotion of SUMPs; stresses that the European structural and investment funds should be used more systematically for cities that have developed an integrated local transport plan, such as a SUMP, and identified the appropriate actions in accordance with the criteria set out in the relevant legislation;

23.    Calls on the Commission to work with public transport operators and authorities with the aim of providing travel information to users through different media, including information addressing the needs of people with disabilities, and to play a greater role in identifying EU-wide best practices and conditions for improving urban public transport systems; calls also on the Commission and the Member States to safeguard the obligation for urban transport systems to connect city centres with their peripheral areas;

24.    Stresses that urban areas need a certain degree of flexibility to enable them to meet their obligations under EU law in full respect of the principle of subsidiarity and to ensure that mobility solutions are adapted to their specific circumstances;

25.    Stresses that the behaviour of transport users is key to the development of a more sustainable transport system; calls for initiatives that motivate and enable users, especially young people, to use safer and more sustainable means of transport (walking, cycling, including bike sharing and renting, public transport, car sharing, carpooling), which should be deployed within a safe infrastructure, and for journey planning and real-time information to be made available in order to facilitate the intermodal use of different transport modes through Intelligent Transport Systems; calls on the Commission to identify best-practice examples of combining multiple modes of transport with the potential to be implemented in other urban agglomerations;

26.    Stresses the need for better national and EU transport data on the behaviour of transport users, in particular as regards walking, cycling and gender-differentiated travel patterns, to be used by local authorities when defining their urban mobility policies;

27.    Emphasises the importance of taking steps to support regional programmes for creating and expanding cycling networks in large European regions, in order to encourage citizens to take more responsibility in environmental matters, to give everyone the opportunity to cycle, and to reduce noise pollution, congestion and urban pollution;

28.    Highlights the importance of analysing the positive effects on society of new forms of mobility supported by the Sharing Economy model, including ride-sharing; considers it important that there is a sharing of best practices among Member States so that regulatory adjustment is made to take account of these door-to-door mobility innovation platforms;

29.    Calls on the Commission to monitor the situation in the different Member States as regards the operation of transportation network companies that match drivers to passengers (Uber being the most prominent example), and to carry out an assessment of the legal, social, economic and environmental consequences arising from the operation of such companies, accompanied, if appropriate, by relevant measures or recommendations for developing innovative new services in Europe, taking into account the existing taxi services;

30.    Calls on the Commission to require the Member States to provide conditions of fair competition between shared transportation companies and traditional taxi and intercity transport companies as regards compliance with tax legislation, safety, public service obligations and employment conditions;

31.    Stresses that powered two-wheelers (motorcycles, scooters and mopeds) and, increasingly, e-powered two- and three-wheelers play a significant role in sustainable mobility, especially in urban areas where they contribute to tackling congestion and parking problems as well as providing a solution for small logistics; insists, therefore, that the specific design and afferent benefits of these vehicles should be adequately taken into account and reflected in EU transport legislation and guidelines;

32.    Calls for better optimisation of the supply chain in urban areas; urban freight vehicles contribute disproportionately to air and noise pollution and have a negative impact on congestion; urban logistics should foster optimisation of transport and cost-effective introduction of new types of operations, technologies and business models; better selection of modes and vehicles can ensure that a transport solution is optimally matched with the specific requirements of the shipment and the city in question;

33.    Stresses the importance of logistics depots located on the edge of urban areas, enabling goods to be transported to their destination in a coordinated way using the most energy-efficient modes of transport;

Placing people at the heart of transport policy

34.    Calls, with regard to road safety, for:

–       the swift adoption of a 2020 target of a 40 % reduction in the number of people seriously injured, accompanied by a fully fledged EU strategy; calls on the Member States to provide without delay all relevant statistical data so as to enable the Commission to set that target and strategy,

–       a strengthening of actions aimed at reducing the number of deaths and injuries on the road, with particular attention to the main causes, including driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs, excessive speed and not wearing seatbelts,

–       action to attain the 2020 road safety target of less than 15 000 fatalities, through the introduction and implementation of cost-effective road safety measures at EU and national level,

–       actions to reduce accidents among vulnerable users, in particular users of two-wheeled vehicles, pedestrians in urban environments and older drivers,

–       road safety measures within the upcoming Road Package and a mid-term review of the Commission’s Road Safety Programme 2011-2020,

–       a review of Directive 2015/413 facilitating cross-border exchange of information on road-safety-related traffic offences, and efforts to extend its application to the EU’s neighbouring countries,

–       the extension, within the revision of Directive 2008/96/EC on road infrastructure safety management, of its four main measures to other parts of the road network, including all parts of motorways and rural and urban roads,

–       actions to be prioritised, as suggested by the Action Plan and defined by the Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS) Directive (2010/40/EU), with regard to vulnerable road users,

–       a review of the Professional Drivers Training and Qualification Directive with the aim of clarifying its provisions, and the promotion and development of post-licence training schemes for all vehicle users,

–       a proposal by 2016 to review the General Safety Regulation (661/2009) and the Pedestrian Protection Regulation (78/2009) in order to establish mandatory rules for heavy goods vehicles’ (HGVs’) cab design and safety, direct vision, crash performance and pedestrian protection, prioritising vulnerable road users,

–       greater application in new passenger cars and commercial vehicles of driver assistance safety systems such as automated emergency braking (AEA), distance warning, lane departure warning (LDW), tyre wear indicators, overridable intelligent speed adaptation (ISA) and eCall, coupled with cooperative intelligent transport systems,

–       a review of the third Driving Licence Directive, in order to introduce:

•  mandatory training for drivers in new vehicle functions (driver assistance systems),

•  a second phase for obtaining a driving licence,

•  lifelong road safety education,

•  a fitness test for drivers, and

•  a medical/psychological examination for traffic offenders as regards, for instance, alcohol, drugs or aggression,

–       a harmonised EU blood alcohol concentration limit of 0.0 for new drivers in the first two years and for professional drivers;

35.    Stresses that although significant improvements have been achieved in road safety over the past years, differences between Members States still persist and further measures are needed to attain the long-term Vision Zero objective; notes that road safety goes hand in hand with respectful behaviour by all road users, and that education in families and schools should play a greater role in achieving that objective;

36.    Stresses the need to complete the established legislative framework for passenger rights with measures aimed at eliminating all possible loopholes in the legislation, covering passengers on multimodal journeys and ensuring fair intermodal competition, while taking account of specific differences between transport modes, legal responsibility for the individual sections of the journey and the interaction between the various modes; reiterates its call for a Charter of Passenger Rights that would set out the fundamental passenger rights applicable to all modes of transport, taking account of the specificities of each mode and containing a separate section on multimodal journeys, so as to improve the visibility of EU rules and ensure better enforcement; calls for initiatives to promote and make available to passengers multimodal travel information, planning and ticketing services; asks also for measures to improve the quality of transport and facilitate barrier-free accessibility for elderly people, passengers with reduced mobility and disabled passengers, and for greater consideration to be given to passengers’ special needs, such as those of cyclists transporting their bicycles on trains;

37.    Calls, in connection with the fundamental right of everyone to individual mobility, especially people with disabilities and the elderly, for more investment in research and development of appropriate driver-assistance systems;

38.    Notes that improving the availability of free or low-cost broadband, cellular networks, Wi-Fi and other digital services on public transport and at stations would improve personal mobility;

39.    Calls for an EU Roadmap aimed at establishing the framework for a European seamless multimodal passenger transport system; this Roadmap should identify key European multimodal passenger corridors under the existing TEN-T network, bring together public and private resources, align existing initiatives and concentrate EU funding support;

40.    Calls on the Commission and Member States to address the quality of work in all transport modes, with respect in particular to training, certification, working conditions and career development, with a view to creating quality jobs, developing the necessary skills and strengthening the competitiveness and mobility of EU transport operators; stresses the importance of resolving the issue of labour turnover and of an ageing workforce in the transport sector, and the urgent need to make working in the sector attractive to new generations;

41.    Emphasises the crucial importance of ensuring equal and fair treatment, good terms and working conditions and a safe working environment for transport workers; calls on the Commission, therefore, to present concrete and immediate measures/initiatives to address social aspects in the various transport modes, with the aim of promoting high-quality jobs and working conditions for transport workers and ensuring fair and undistorted competition between transport operators; urges the Commission to closely monitor the application and enforcement of EU social legislation by Member States in all transport modes;

42.    Stresses that measures are also necessary to boost women’s participation in the transport labour market, remove possible existing barriers, and ensure equal treatment of men and women by addressing existing remuneration and advancement gaps;

43.    Urges the Commission to ensure that proposals on the opening-up of services in all transport markets go hand in hand with the proper enforcement of EU social legislation and, where necessary, with support measures to avoid disparities between social conditions in the different Member States; stresses that the opening-up of transport markets should not lead to social dumping, poorer-quality services, less public service, unnecessary administrative burdens, unfair business practices or distortion of fair competition; it should, also, put an end to the fragmentation of the internal market and prevent the creation of monopolies or a race to the bottom with respect to the social protection of transport workers;

A competitive, efficient, safe, integrated and interoperable transport system

44.    Emphasises that digitalisation is vital to improving the efficiency and productivity of the transport sector; stresses the need to make better use of the opportunities offered by digital technologies, and to promote new transport services, as well as new business and distribution models, in order to foster growth, competiveness and jobs; stresses also the need to provide an enabling regulatory framework for pilot projects aimed at the deployment of intelligent automated transport in Europe; notes in this regard the key role of SMEs and start-ups in fostering innovation in the transport sector;

45.    Calls on the Commission to put the integrated approach (interoperability, inter-connectivity and intermodality), including ICT systems, at the heart of the review of the White Paper; reminds the Commission, furthermore, to combine technological advances with behavioural change in order to obtain an ambitious modal shift, as well as transport avoidance, through green logistics, proper mobility management tools and the application of digitalisation;

46.    Stresses that a European sustainable mobility policy must look at synergies between all transport modes, corridors and networks, and focus on the needs of key nodes, urban areas, interconnectivity points, transhipment platforms and ports; mobility should be envisaged as a system rather than a collection of individual modes;

47.    Calls for standardisation of intermodal loading units, taking into account the loading units used in global transport and the dimensions of transport vehicles, and for uniform provisions on loading safety, in order to optimise multi-modal transport and improve safety;

48.    Insists that bureaucratic hurdles should be reduced for all forms of transport; calls for greater simplification and harmonisation of documents and administrative and customs procedures, which should be practical, efficient and workable for all parties along the logistics chain; calls on the Commission to submit a proposal for establishing an electronic framework for multimodal transport of goods (e-Freight), achieving paperless, seamless information flows along the whole transport logistics chain, taking into account existing well-functioning tools and synergies, global developments and best practices;

49.    Calls for the introduction of a new goal, accompanied by the necessary measures, of shifting 50 % of the current transport of dangerous goods within the EU towards more sustainable transport modes such as rail and inland waterways by 2030 in full compliance with Directive 2008/68/EC on the inland transport of dangerous goods;

50.    Calls on the Commission to streamline the rules for the intermodal transport of dangerous goods so as to ensure interoperability between the different modes;

51.    Urges the Commission and the Member States to explore the potential and support the deployment of tube freight transportation and cycle logistics as promising concepts for a sustainable transport system;

52.    Highlights the key role played by the transport sector in developing tourism, in particular in those regions of the Union which are more remote and currently very difficult to access;

53.    Underlines that European hubs connect Europe with the rest of the world and that Europe needs to maintain its direct connectivity to all parts of the world, providing direct flights by European carriers from their hubs to overseas destinations and maintaining jobs and growth in the European aviation sector; stresses that flights within the EU not only provide mobility in the internal market but also play a vital role as feeder flights to maintain connectivity at EU hubs; EU policy must ensure an efficient and competitive feeder network to strengthen European hubs by reducing costs to globally competitive levels and ensuring fair competition with carriers from third countries; the EU Member States need a coherent and common policy in order not to further lose direct connectivity between Europe, Asia and Africa to hubs in the Gulf and Turkey; asks the Commission, therefore, to implement these goals in all EU aviation legislation and to apply them in negotiations with third countries;

54.    Calls for an enhanced research and technology policy with the aim of promoting innovation in the transport sector; considers that this policy, which must be accompanied by appropriate funding, should be drawn up in cooperation with all relevant stakeholders, including citizens and representatives of users, in order to understand the needs of the sector and, accordingly, improve the allocation of EU funding, in particular through the Horizon 2020 programme; takes the view that priority should be given to projects with a clear European added-value which aim at decarbonising transport and promoting energy-efficient modes of transport (including walking and cycling), increasing the efficiency and transparency of the supply chain, enhancing transport accessibility, safety and security, improving traffic management and reducing administrative burdens; takes the view that particular attention should also be paid to disruptive technologies in the field of transport, for example in the form of automated or remote-controlled vehicles such as drones and driverless vehicles;

55.    Calls for the same level of effort in the area of education to encourage the appearance of new studies and training processes, in particular at professional and higher levels, focused on the new skills and professions that will emerge as a result of intelligent mobility;

56.    Stresses the importance of supporting EU framework programmes for research, development and innovation in order to achieve cleaner fuels and a high degree of technological advance, for example in relation to refined biofuels;

57.    Asks within the framework of the REFIT programme and during subsequent evaluations of European legislation for a general review of European driving licence and safety conditions and of transport-related reporting requirements with a view to achieving a substantial decrease in administrative burdens;

58.    Recognises the importance of interference-free radio frequencies, in particular as regards the enforcement of driving time and rest periods of road transport workers and the deployment of intelligent transport systems; calls on the Commission to create, where necessary, the relevant regulatory framework;

The global dimension of transport

59.    Stresses that the creation of a European transport area is an important priority which depends to a large extent on international acceptance under agreements negotiated globally with our trade partners for all transport modes, particularly in connection with air and maritime transport, and that the EU should play an increasingly formative role in the relevant international bodies;

60.    Takes the view that the EU must maintain its leading role in the global efforts to reduce transport emissions in the framework of the 2015 Paris Climate Conference (COP21) by promoting at global level the decarbonisation of transport and the development of sustainable modes of transport, thus contributing to achieving the internationally agreed goal of keeping global warming below 2°C;

61.    Calls for a more integrated approach between Member States on the possibility of applying a reciprocity principle in our commercial relations with third countries and for an examination within the EU funding policy for transport of whether additional funding from third countries is appropriate;

62.    Emphasises that the exploitation of international resources for the development of our transport system (oil, lithium, precious metals, biofuels) should respect the legitimate interests of the people who live in the areas from which these resources are traded and imported;

Integration of all transport modes within the vision of a more efficient, sustainable, competitive, accessible, user- and citizen-friendly transport system

63.    Calls, with regard to air transport, for:

–       addressing the major challenges to competition in the European air sector posed by the decline in direct connectivity between Europe and the rest of the world, limited airport capacity in view of the forthcoming increase in air traffic, and widening of the range of air services provided by non-EU companies,

–       a revision of Regulation 868/2004 in order to safeguard fair competition in EU external aviation relations and reinforce the competitive position of the EU aviation industry, ensure reciprocity and eliminate unfair practices, including subsidies that distort the market,

–       an Aviation Dialogue with the Gulf States and Turkey with a view to enhancing financial transparency and safeguarding fair competition; inclusion of ‘fair competition clauses’ in air transport agreements, detailed provisions on subsidies, unfair practices and competition, and efficient means of action in the event of non-compliance with those provisions,

–       speeding-up of the process for the conclusion, where necessary, of new aviation agreements with the EU’s major trading partners such as neighbouring countries, BRICs, ASEAN countries and Mexico, including provisions for improved market access for air cargo services,

–       a review of the regulatory and fiscal policies of the EU and the Member States to strengthen the competitiveness of the European aviation industry and ensure fair competition with airlines from third countries; calls, therefore, on the Commission to review and eliminate any unilateral EU provisions that distort competition and to urge Member States to act accordingly with regard to similar national provisions,

–       completion of the internal market for aviation by removing barriers introduced by Member States for EU carriers wishing to operate from their Member State of registration to a third country via another Member State,

–       coherent and effective development of an EU airport network, which must include, firstly, the main airports (‘hubs’) and, secondly, a well-served, viable and supported network of local, provincial and regional airports, which are essential to the growth and development of the territories concerned, in particular remote areas and outermost regions, which are often accessible only by air transport; the drawing up of a legislative framework for the development and maximisation of the untapped potential of regional airports and of new infrastructure in crowded airports,

–       approval of EU-funded projects that are part of the TEN-T core network as a priority,

–       a thorough preparation and swift adoption of a comprehensive Aviation Package, including: a new regulatory framework on civil drones that ensures safety, security and fundamental rights while fostering the economic potential that civil drones offer to European businesses, especially SMEs and start-ups; revision of the EASA Regulation to clarify its role vis-à-vis national aviation authorities and strengthen its abilities to oversee aviation safety in all Member States, including their remote regions, and promote EU rules and standards globally,

–       all necessary actions by the Member States to accelerate the implementation of the Single European Sky, through the adoption of the SES2+ package, the full implementation and operation of functional airspace blocks (FABs) and the deployment of the future air traffic management system (SESAR), so as to defragment the EU airspace with a view to reducing flight delays, improving safety and mitigating the environmental impact of air transport,

–       swift adoption by the Council of its position on the revision of Regulation 261/2004 and Regulation 2027/97 on air passenger rights, and Regulation 95/93 on the allocation of slots,

–       examination by the Council of the options for resolving the UK-Spain dispute over Gibraltar, which is currently impeding numerous legislative files relating to air transport,

–       enhancement of the negotiations within the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) on the development of a global market-based mechanism addressing international aviation emissions,

–       introduction of international sustainability criteria for renewable aviation jet fuel,

–       support for aeronautical research and development through the Horizon 2020 and Clean Sky programmes, in order to develop new and cleaner technologies resulting in less noisy and more fuel-efficient aircraft, to promote new types of aircraft such as drones and to create growth and jobs in the European aviation industry,

–       a thorough review by the Commission and the Member States of their strategy and policies on aviation safety and security with a view to moving gradually to a risk-based approach for the benefit of passengers,

–       enhancement of EU-wide aviation safety performance in the field of aircraft manufacturing, training and licensing of crews, flight operations, air traffic management and air navigation services,

–       an assessment of the possible safety measures necessary for avoiding air accidents like that of Germanwings Flight 9525 that occurred in the Alps in March 2015,

–       a Commission proposal including measures to enhance safety and social rules, particularly flight and rest times, in order to avoid fatigue and improve the quality of cabin air,

–       the development of a coordinated set of rules governing flight schools and the registration of flight hours for pilots active in the EU, ensuring a more effective control and evaluation of employment conditions in the airline industry,

–       sharing of general aviation data with Eurostat by Member States, in particular concerning numbers of aeroplanes, pilots and flight hours, so as to improve the applicable regulations, with special emphasis on air safety,

–       a constructive social dialogue between aviation stakeholders so as to address the new challenges deriving from the introduction of new technologies that will require jobs in the aviation sector to adapt accordingly,

–       measures against the increase of socially problematic business practices such as ‘flags of convenience’ and different forms of atypical employment and outsourcing; revision of Regulation 1008/2008 to ensure proper enforcement and application of national social legislation and collective agreements for airlines having operational bases on EU territory; a revised definition of a company’s ‘principal place of business’ so as to require airlines to demonstrate substantial aviation activities in a country; EASA recommendations requiring at least 50 per cent of maintenance technicians to be directly employed, to cover all categories of ground staff, pilots and cabin crew;

64.    Calls, with regard to road transport, for:

–       effective national policy frameworks aimed at the development of the market as regards the use of electric vehicles and alternative fuels (electricity, hydrogen, natural gas (compressed natural gas (CNG) and liquefied natural gas (LNG)), liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), synthetic and paraffinic fuels, and sustainable biofuels, especially those produced from processing waste and residues, including molasses-based ethanol), and the rapid deployment of the necessary refuelling/recharging infrastructure; exchange of best practices between existing projects in the different Member States with regard to the market for alternative fuels and city distribution; an EU Action Plan for the implementation of the strategy set out in the Commission communication entitled ‘Clean Power for Transport: A European alternative fuels strategy’ in order to achieve the broadest possible use of alternative fuels for transport and to promote sustainable electric mobility throughout the Union,

–       an overall 40 % increase by 2020, as compared with 2010 figures, in the number of secure parking spaces for heavy-duty vehicles on the Trans-European Transport Network and improvements in their quality and hygiene standards,

–       initiatives to ensure interoperability of electronic road toll systems,

–       an evaluation by the Commission of the different car road-charging schemes and their compatibility with the EU Treaties, in particular the principle of non-discrimination on the basis of residency,

–       approval as a priority of EU-funded infrastructure projects completing the road network that is part of the TEN-T core network,

–       an EU roadmap for cycling to be included in the Commission Work Programme 2016,

–       a legislative proposal setting mandatory limits on average CO2 emissions from new passenger cars and vans for the period beyond 2020, maintaining a clear long-term emissions-reduction trajectory,

–       the timely completion of a simulation tool measuring in an accurate, reliable and cost-efficient manner the fuel consumption and CO2 emissions of heavy-duty vehicles (trucks, buses and coaches), to be followed, if appropriate, by a legislative proposal setting mandatory limits on average CO2 emissions from newly registered heavy-duty vehicles as is already the case for cars and vans; further measures to incentivise the market uptake of the most efficient vehicles and promote best practices to reduce fuel consumption,

–       measures to increase the fuel efficiency of, and reduce CO2 emissions from, heavy-duty vehicles, including further use of training in eco-driving, improved transport logistics and intelligent infrastructure, and greater use of alternative fuels,

–       a revised test cycle, with more robust conformity testing requirements, for the measurement of CO2 and pollutant emissions from vehicles, replacing the currently used ‘New European Driving Cycle’, to ensure that the emissions and fuel consumption of vehicles are measured by means of a testing procedure that reflects real-world driving conditions,

–       the Commission to start working without undue delay on the review of Directive 2015/719 on maximum authorised weights and dimensions, so that, at the latest by 2020, a report can be submitted to the European Parliament and the Council which takes into consideration specific characteristics of certain market segments such as specialised car transporters used within the sector of finished vehicle logistics,

–       the adoption of a social code for mobile road transport workers, addressing also the problem of disguised self-employment, to take better account of the specific nature of international road transport workers and ensure fair competition,

–       better enforcement, evaluation and, if necessary, clarification or review of the common rules for access to the international road haulage market (Regulation 1072/2009),

–       measures to ensure the compliance of national provisions with EU law in the field of cross-border transport,

–       considering the creation of a European Road Transport Agency to ensure proper implementation of EU legislation and promote standardisation across all Member States,

–       measures to ensure legal clarity and better implementation of rules concerning working conditions, social and welfare rights, wages and social responsibility, so as to guarantee high social standards in road haulage across the EU; calls on the Commission to take measures against illegal practices that lead to unfair competition and encourage social dumping; the road haulage sector should be regarded as a specific sector, given the high mobility of its workers and the need of drivers to spend weekly rest periods at home,

–       adjustment of the application of the principles of the internal market which effectively separate freedom to provide services from freedom of establishment, with the aim of ensuring that activities by an undertaking in a Member State in which it is not established are strictly temporary;

65.    Calls, with regard to rail transport, for:

–       the completion of the Single European Railway Area through swift adoption of the 4th Railway Package, ensuring a balanced opening-up of the domestic rail passenger market, independence of infrastructure managers, competitive tendering for public-service contracts, the highest level of rail safety and interoperability, and sufficient human and financial resources for the European Railway Agency to ensure that it is fully operational and able to perform its mission as a one-stop shop for vehicle authorisation and safety certification; the 4th Railway Package should ensure a high level of quality and efficiency of rail services, safeguard the economic equilibrium of public-service obligations and promote high standards for working conditions and territorial cohesion; its adoption should be followed by quick transposition and implementation by the Member States,

–       adoption by the Commission of a rail strategy proposing new measures to reach the 2030 and 2050 modal shift targets laid down in the ‘Ten goals for a competitive and resource-efficient transport system’ of the White Paper,

–       solid, sufficient, transparent and predictable long-term funding, with simplified rules and procedures for access to EU funding, so as to improve national and cross-border rail infrastructure quality and capacity, prioritising the maintenance and upgrading of existing infrastructure, and enabling the provision of reliable, safe, accessible and sustainable services by rail freight and passenger operators,

–       a detailed analysis of the reasons for which the European railway area is characterised by a large number of missing links across the borders of Member States; calls for measures and incentives by the Commission for the revitalisation as a matter of the highest urgency of local, regional and national trans-border rail connections that were dismantled or abandoned during WWII and the post-war area, despite their economic interest or usefulness to the public, as well as urgent construction of those that have been planned but not completed, so as to remove existing bottlenecks and missing links in cross-border regions; revitalisation and maintenance of secondary railway lines which feed into national core networks and European corridors; initiatives to find new functions for disused networks, such as transporting freight or providing new services for tourists,

–       approval as a priority of EU-funded infrastructure projects that complete the rail network which is part of the TEN-T core network and of the projects approved under the CEF,

–       expanding the role of the Commission in order to achieve the effective and speedy completion of the TEN-T railway corridors, which have been planned but postponed by Member States in spite of their usefulness in social and economic terms,

–       a fact-finding study of the social, economic and environmental benefits of continuing support for national and international overnight rail services, and, where appropriate, revitalisation of those services, as well as of inter-city cross-border services, for instance in the context of public-service obligations and tendering procedures,

–       all necessary actions by the Member States, the Commission and rail stakeholders for the implementation of the Shift2Rail Joint Undertaking, in order to accelerate the integration of advanced technologies into innovative rail product solutions, increase the attractiveness of rail transport and bolster the position of the European railway industry,

–       actions aimed at making the European railway network genuinely interoperable, decreasing persistent technical barriers, promoting technical solutions that enable trains to use tracks of various gauges, and ensuring that the different height restrictions in the EU do not constitute an additional obstacle,

–       the deployment of the European rail traffic management system (ERTMS) on all TEN-T core network corridors as a priority, including the corresponding on-board equipment on locomotives,

–       the rapid implementation of Regulation (EU) No 913/2010 regarding the establishment of international rail corridors for competitive freight, and the development or improvement of the One-Stop Shops (OSS) for the coordination of those corridors,

–       reduction of rail freight noise by retrofitting freight wagons and improving rail infrastructure through targeted public funding; submission by the Commission of a proposal providing for an EU-wide ban on excessively noisy freight wagons by 2020,

–       the development and implementation of integrated ticketing systems for national and international rail transport, and the elimination of extra charges applicable to rail passengers travelling cross-border,

–       the removal of barriers that prevent the European railway industry (manufacturers of rolling-stock, rail infrastructure and signalling systems) from bidding for public contracts in non-EU countries;

66.    Calls, with regard to maritime transport, for:

–       measures to facilitate the formalities for ships operating between EU ports with a view to establishing a real European Maritime Transport Space without Barriers (‘Blue Belt’),

–       better coordination between the maritime and customs authorities at all levels in order to streamline information flows and limit unnecessary administrative burdens and customs formalities,

–       measures to develop the potential of motorways of the sea as part of the Trans-European Transport Network,

–       additional measures to maintain and further develop attractive, safe and sustainable quality shipping and to ensure open maritime markets and access to cargoes without restrictions,

–       measures to support and coordinate the adaptation of port gateways and logistic systems for larger ships and promote better port connections, in particular with rail and inland waterways; facilitation of port investments through the mobilisation of various sources of EU funding so as to increase the capacity of EU ports, upgrade the existing infrastructure, develop multimodal terminals and promote the creation of smart ports using intelligent transport systems, and of smart port cities; measures to improve seaport infrastructure, in particular in the Mediterranean and the Black Sea, in order to shift freight from road to sea in those areas,

–       an assurance that the maritime ports of the core network will be connected with the railway and road and, where possible, inland waterway transport infrastructure of the Trans-European Transport Network by 2030, except where physical constraints prevent such connection,

–       more clarity and coherence on the application of state aid rules to ports in order to create a pragmatic, predictable and stable environment which enables long-term port investment strategies, reduces administrative burdens and minimises procedural time frames,

–       advancing with the Commission proposal for a regulation establishing a framework on market access to port services and financial transparency of ports, in order to modernise and improve the quality and efficiency of port services, strengthen competition and create framework conditions to attract investment in ports,

–       setting a global binding target in the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) to reach the objective of the White Paper for an at least 40 % reduction in CO2 emissions from maritime bunker fuels by 2050, to be supported by an EU intermediate target for 2030; enhancement of the negotiations within the IMO on the development of a global market-based mechanism addressing international maritime emissions, such as an emissions pricing mechanism; in the event that an international agreement on a global monitoring, reporting and verification (MRV) system for greenhouse gas emissions or on global measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from maritime transport is reached, the Commission to review Regulation (EU) 2015/757 and, if appropriate, to propose amendments to this regulation in order to ensure alignment with the international agreement,

–       consideration of the extension of the sulphur limits for marine fuel applicable to SOx Emission Control Areas (SECAs), and of the relevant IMO rules, to the entire European maritime area,

–       promotion of emission abatement technologies and energy efficiency measures through financial incentives and targeted support measures, with particular focus on the use of alternative fuels, as well as promotion of slow-steaming measures, which are reported to have great potential for reducing fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions,

–       actions supporting the deployment of alternative fuels infrastructure in sea and inland ports, including the provision of LNG bunkering facilities and shore-side electricity,

–       a legislative proposal to modernise passenger ship safety legislation; better implementation and, if appropriate, review of the Third Maritime Safety Package to strengthen the prevention of accidents at sea and the management of their consequences,

–       a legislative proposal seeking to clarify the liability and compensation regime in view of the growing phenomenon of containers being lost at sea, based on a system enabling identification of the owners of such containers;

67.    Calls, with regard to inland waterway transport, for:

–       the establishment of an appropriate framework to optimise the internal market for inland waterway transport and to remove barriers that prevent its increased use,

–       full implementation of the Naiades II action programme, with special attention to infrastructure, river information services deployment and innovation; an assessment of the programme by 2017 and, if necessary, adaptation of the proposed measures to ensure that the objectives of the programme are achieved,

–       approval of EU-funded projects regarding inland waterways that are part of the TEN-T core network,

–       proper upgrade and all-year-round maintenance of, and elimination of bottlenecks in, inland waterways that are part of the TEN-T core network corridors by 2025, in compliance with EU environmental legislation, in order to safeguard adequate service levels,

–       greater support by the Commission and the Member States for the promotion of innovation in inland waterway transport under Horizon 2020 and the Connection Europe Facility, the use of alternative fuels and the technical and environmental adaptation of the fleet to reduce greenhouse emissions,

–       integration of inland waterway transport into multimodal transport and logistics, as well as into sustainable urban mobility plans and policies in European cities crossed by waterways, and enhancement of the role of inland ports in urban freight distribution,

–       a swift review of Directive 2005/44/EC on harmonised river information services (RIS), ensuring full deployment of RIS by 2020 and connection to other cooperative intelligent transport systems,

–       convergence, where appropriate, of the governance and regulatory systems of the Rhine and the Danube to develop an efficient, multimodal, sustainable transport system along Europe’s main inland waterways,

–       involvement of the Commission in the allocation of EU funds and the coordination of the implementation of projects included in the EU Strategy for the Danube Region,

–       a legislative proposal on the recognition and modernisation of professional qualifications in inland navigation and consideration of measures to attract more young people to this sector;

°

°         °

68.    Calls on the Commission to take into account the proposals contained in this resolution in the mid-term review of the White Paper and future initiatives in the transport area;

69.    Urges the Commission to monitor progress towards reaching the goals of the White Paper, and to report every five years on its implementation;

70.    Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission and the governments and parliaments of the Member States.

(1)

OJ C 168 E, 14.6.2013, p. 72.

(2)

OJ C 351 E, 2.12.2011, p. 13.

(3)

OJ C 175 E, 10.7.2008, p. 556-561.

(4)

OJ C 43 E, 19.2.2004, p. 250-259.

(5)

Texts adopted, P7_TA(2011)0408.

(6)

As defined in Article 4 of Directive 2008/98/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 19 November 2008 on waste and repealing certain Directives.

(7)

Road safety in the European Union, European Commission, March 2015.


EXPLANATORY STATEMENT

In its 2011 White Paper on Transport(1), the European Commission presented an ambitious future strategy for a competitive transport system with the aim to increase mobility, remove major barriers in key areas and promote growth and employment. At the same time, the proposals aim to dramatically reduce Europe’s dependence on imported oil and cut carbon emissions in transport by 60% by 2050.

Your Rapporteur reiterates European Parliament’s support for the effective implementation of the White Paper on Transport. The mere reading of the ten goals set out in the White Paper, in support of the overarching vision to achieve a competitive and resource efficient transport system (benchmarks for achieving the 60% GHG emission reduction target), demonstrates that, although our work has started, the major efforts needed to transform the EU transport system lie ahead of us.

Solving the major problems identified in the White Paper means meeting very difficult goals by 2050, and challenging ones by 2020/30. Transforming transport and making it more efficient, cleaner, safer and more reliable will not be possible with just a small number of selected interventions. Transport is a complex system that is based on the interaction of infrastructure, vehicles, information technology, rules and behaviour. All these elements must be part of a common vision for change. Although the European Union has (and should use) the power to shape our future transport policies, in many areas European intervention will not suffice. Mutually complementary action will be needed at national, regional and local levels of government as well as by citizens and industry themselves.

Before looking at the future, it is useful to take stock of developments in the recent past. While it is too early to fully assess the impact of a number of policy measures taken since the adoption of the White Paper, a stock-taking exercise is necessary to obtain an overview of the state of play in the implementation of the 40 initiatives and 131 action points listed in its Annex.

More importantly, it is necessary to evaluate to what extent the list of actions set out in the Annex of the White Paper are sufficient to achieve its overarching goals. Overall, there seems to be a significant gap between the objectives and the means by which they might be achieved and financed. The very ambitious targets appear very difficult to reach, as long as they are not backed up with a more detailed and solid project plan, linked to realistic and workable short and medium term targets along the way towards the long term (2050) goals.

1. THE NEED FOR A ROBUST AND COMPETITIVE TRANSPORT SYSTEM IN A GLOBAL ENVIRONMENT

The global economy is ever more characterised by the emergence of new powerful players. European economic actors have to confront a larger number of global competitors. The World is moving ahead in all fields and the profound changes proposed in the White Paper should not only be seen as an opportunity for increasing efficiency, but also as a necessary condition for maintaining the competitiveness of the European transport and logistics sector which needs to stay one of Europe’s growth engines.

Many European companies are world leaders in infrastructure, logistics, traffic management systems and manufacturing of transport equipment. But as other world regions are launching huge, ambitious transport modernisation and infrastructure investment programmes, it is crucial that European transport continues to develop and invest to maintain its competitive position.

EU companies face a number of restrictions when trying to expand their businesses in third markets. In this context, widening market access for EU transport industry products needs to go hand in hand with the efforts to eliminate trade barriers. Promotion of shared social and environmental standards is needed to allow the transport sector to become truly global and to avoid unfair competition, while there is a need to adopt common technical standards on a world basis (that could be based on EU ones) to strengthen the competitiveness and the sustainability of the transport industry as a whole. The EU should continue to aim at greater market access in transport in all relevant international negotiations.

2. GROWING COMPETITION IN INTERNATIONAL AVIATION

The geographic position of Europe allows the European air transport system not only to connect Europe’s citizens and businesses with the rest of the world, but also to be an international air transport hub. However, the competitive position of EU airlines faces many challenges and threats, both in the internal and the external markets. Among these challenges, not necessarily connected to the on-going economic crisis, are increasing competition from non-EU carriers in fast growing regions such as the Asia-Pacific region, and challenges of managing available capacity efficiently. One particular challenge is to handle the social aspect of the industry transformation and particularly the changing business models (notably the low-cost model), which bring about questions on the status and the social protection of transnational mobile workers.

This situation is exacerbated by airlines from the Gulf region expanding their capacity on many of the routes previously serviced by European carriers. Many of these airlines are (partly) state-owned, supported by state aid, benefitting from access to cheap (airport) infrastructure, fuel and capital. In addition, they are not subject to night-curfews at airports (noise restrictions), ticket taxes and environmental charges as their European competitors. The EU needs to use the full range of tools available to tackle more effectively unfair competition. Furthermore, the EU needs to show leadership in driving change to international ownership and control regimes that will ensure that EU-based carriers stay prominent in the global network for the years to come.

3. MOVING TOWARDS A LOW-CARBON TRANSPORT SYSTEM

Transport is responsible for around a quarter (25%) of EU greenhouse gas emissions making it the second biggest emitting sector after energy. While emissions from other sectors are generally falling, those from transport have continued to increase until 2008 when transport emissions started to decrease owing to increased efficiency of passenger cars and slower growth in mobility as a result of the economic recession. However, if we stick to the business as usual approach, CO2 emissions from transport would remain one third higher than their 1990 level by 2050.

More than 70% of transport-related greenhouse gas emissions come from road transport. Road transport alone contributes about one-fifth of the EU’s total emissions of CO2. However, there are also significant emissions from the aviation and maritime sectors which are experiencing the fastest growth in emissions, meaning that policies are required for a range of transport modes.

EU28 greenhouse gas emissions by sector and mode of transport, 2012 (Source: European Commission)


Preserving mobility will only be possible by making it sustainable. The challenge is to break the transport system’s dependence on oil (95%) without sacrificing its efficiency and curbing mobility and economic growth. Investment in new clean technologies has a great potential to drive economic growth and job creation. Structural changes in transport can improve the quality of life and of the environment while at the same time preserving people’s freedom to travel and the competitiveness of EU industry.

4. SHIFTING THE BALANCE BETWEEN MODES OF TRANSPORT

There is a growing imbalance between modes of transport in Europe. The increasing success of road and air transport is resulting in ever worsening congestion, while the failure to exploit the full potential of rail, short-sea shipping and inland waterways is impeding the development of real alternatives to road haulage. While this reflects the fact that some modes have adapted better to the needs of a modern economy, it is also a sign that not all external costs have been included in the price of transport and certain social and safety regulations have not been respected, notably in road transport.

A European sustainable mobility policy needs to build on a broader range of policy tools achieving shift to more environmentally friendly modes, especially on long distances, in urban areas and on congested corridors. At the same time each transport mode must be optimised. All modes must become more environmentally friendly, safe and energy efficient. Co-modality, i.e. the efficient use of different modes on their own and in combination, will result in an optimal and sustainable utilisation of resources. This approach offers the best guarantees to achieve at the same time a high level of both mobility and of environmental protection.

5. A SINGLE EUROPEAN TRANSPORT AREA

Despite EU enlargement, large divergences in terms of transport infrastructure remain between eastern and western parts of the EU. Completion of the Trans-European Transport Network remains one of the preconditions for the rebalancing of transport modes, linking the transport networks of all EU regions and eliminating disparities between the levels of infrastructure development.

Whereas the EU has opened to competition most of its transport markets since the 90’s, a number of obstacles to a smooth and efficient functioning of the internal transport market persist. The level of integration of the EU transport market remains low in comparison to other parts of the economy. A genuine EU-wide internal market exists only in air transport, while other transport modes suffer from different degrees of fragmentation along national borders; this concerns in first place rail and inland waterways, but road and short sea shipping are also affected.

The achievement of a fully integrated transport system is delayed by a number of remaining regulatory barriers to market entry, technical incompatibilities between modes, burdensome administrative procedures, or imperfect and outdated legislation. The opening of the market has not been accompanied by a parallel process of social harmonisation in employment and working conditions. The Commission should address quality of work in all transport modes, with respect to, notably, training, certification, working conditions and career development, with a view to creating quality jobs, developing the necessary skills and strengthening the competitiveness of EU transport operators.

6. PLACING PEOPLE AT THE HEART OF THE TRANSPORT POLICY

Road safety is a major societal issue and a great concern to citizens across Europe. Road transport is the most widely used means of travel and a primary cause of accidents. Although significant improvements have been reached, much still needs to be done to get to a ‘zero-vision’. This should be achieved by: improved safety measures for trucks and cars; building safer roads; developing intelligent vehicles; strengthening licensing and training; better enforcement; targeting injuries; and a new focus on pedestrians, cyclists, motorcyclists and vulnerable road users.

It is also necessary to complete the established legislative framework with measures covering passengers on multimodal journeys with integrated tickets under a single purchase contract, as well as in the event of transport operators’ insolvency. We should also improve the quality of transport for elderly people, passengers with reduced mobility and disabled passengers, including better accessibility of infrastructure.

The urban context poses the biggest challenges to the sustainability of transport. Cities currently suffer the most from congestion, poor air quality and noise exposure. Urban transport is an important source of transport emissions. The urban dimension will become even more important as the percentage of Europeans living in urban areas is projected to increase from 74% today to around 85% in 2050. At the same time, the subsidiarity principle entails a careful approach at European level.

Fortunately, the urban environment offers many options in terms of mobility. In urban areas, walking and cycling, together with public transport, often provide better alternatives not only in terms of emissions, but also of speed: they could readily substitute the large share of trips which cover less than 5km. Facilitating walking and cycling should become an integral part of urban mobility and infrastructure design. Public transport has to gain a higher share than today in the transport mix, become easily accessible for everyone and fully integrated with non-motorised modes.

***

Transport is a complex system that depends on multiple factors. Owing to this complexity, any intervention must be based on a long-term vision for the sustainable mobility of people and goods, not least because policies of structural character take long to implement and must be planned well in advance.

The forthcoming mid-term review of the White Paper on Transport should keep this long-term vision (2050). However, it should be supplemented with intermediate targets and objectives for the years to come. The list of the initiatives and action points proposed in the White Paper should be adapted and complemented on a regular basis, and evaluated against their effectiveness to reach the overarching long-term objectives. The purpose of the mid-term review is not to lower the level of ambition of the objectives set in 2011, but to increase and streamline the efforts to meet them.

(1)

White Paper ‘Roadmap to a Single European Transport Area-Towards a competitive and resource efficient transport system’ (COM(2011)0144)


RESULT OF FINAL VOTE IN COMMITTEE

Date adopted

14.7.2015

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

38

3

5

Members present for the final vote

Daniela Aiuto, Lucy Anderson, Marie-Christine Arnautu, Georges Bach, Izaskun Bilbao Barandica, Deirdre Clune, Michael Cramer, Luis de Grandes Pascual, Andor Deli, Isabella De Monte, Ismail Ertug, Jacqueline Foster, Dieter-Lebrecht Koch, Stelios Kouloglou, Merja Kyllönen, Miltiadis Kyrkos, Bogusław Liberadzki, Marian-Jean Marinescu, Georg Mayer, Gesine Meissner, Cláudia Monteiro de Aguiar, Jens Nilsson, Markus Pieper, Salvatore Domenico Pogliese, Gabriele Preuß, Christine Revault D’Allonnes Bonnefoy, Dominique Riquet, Massimiliano Salini, David-Maria Sassoli, Claudia Schmidt, Claudia Tapardel, Keith Taylor, Pavel Telička, István Ujhelyi, Peter van Dalen, Wim van de Camp, Janusz Zemke, Roberts Zīle, Kosma Złotowski, Elżbieta Katarzyna Łukacijewska

Substitutes present for the final vote

Ivo Belet, Bas Eickhout, Theresa Griffin, Henna Virkkunen

Substitutes under Rule 200(2) present for the final vote

James Carver, Ruža Tomašić

Last updated: 26 August 2015Legal notice