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Parliamentary questions
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15 January 2021
Question for written answer  E-000216/2021
to the Commission
Rule 138
Ignazio Corrao (Verts/ALE)
 Answer in writing 
 Subject: Monopoly in transport services and the right to mobility in the Egadi Islands

The Liberty Lines shipping company has a monopoly on the fast ferry service to the Egadi islands.

The service contract drawn up between the company and the Region of Sicily provides for an annual contribution to ensure territorial continuity and safeguard the rights of the citizens of the smaller islands.

In spite of this commitment, the company has unilaterally suspended the service several times in recent months, citing questionable safety reasons, which were controverted by the weather conditions, which were compatible with navigation.

Moreover, in January 2021 it decided to cancel its reduced fares for commuters, thereby bringing citizens to their knees and making the right of connection with the mainland prohibitively expensive, undermining basic needs and substantive equality.

The new call for tenders by the Region of Sicily for fast ferry services to the Egadi islands provides for a severe reduction in the number of routes, which would exacerbate the situation.

In view of this:

1. What is the Commission’s view of the increase in fares by a company holding a monopoly in the light of Council Regulation (EEC) No 3577/92?

2. What action does it intend to take to protect the right to transport for the citizens of the Egadi Islands?

3. What is its view of the Region of Sicily’s plans to cut the number of miles travelled by these ferries?

Original language of question: IT
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