2018. 06. 12.
Press release by Andor Deli
On June 4, the European Parliament’s Transport and Tourism Committee (TRAN) adopted by a convincing majority a report that excludes the international transport of goods and passengers from the scope of the Posting of Workers Directive. The adopted document could strongly defend Central and Eastern European interests through the formation of new European transport regulations.
“There is a lot of work behind this outcome in the Committee today: the original proposal of the European Commission set international freight on a completely opposite path,” said Vojvodinan Fidesz MEP Andor Deli, EPP responsible for the dossier. This would put so much additional burden on freight companies that it would have made their work impossible while jeopardizing the jobs of tens of thousands of drivers and causing a significant increase in market prices. While the Employment and Social Affairs Committee’s (EMPL) opinion in April supported this view, the leading Transport and Tourism Committee passed a much more acceptable report, which also better reflects everyday practice. However, for this it was necessary that both the eastern European carriers and their western costumers realized that they have to fight shoulder-to-shoulder against unacceptable protectionist restrictions. From a Hungarian perspective, this is a particularly important issue: freight and the freight-related logistics sector amount to around six percent of Hungary’s GDP, while it affects 13 thousand Hungarian carriers and 120 thousand jobs.
“From the beginning, our main objective was to preserve the unified internal freight market,” said Deli, commenting on the Committee’s vote. “However, this requires clear rules that reduce the administrative burden on companies and prevent abuses. In recent months, a number of western European Member States have introduced protective measures in the freight sector. Although through different means, they all serve the same purpose: they seek to protect their own national market from the cheaper and more efficient Central and Eastern European workers.”
“We have managed to prepare a report that won the support of the majority of the Committee’s EPP MEPs. Through long and persistent arguments, we could finally break through the resistance of the so-called Road Alliance, the gathering of the MEPs of the Member States striving to protect national markets. I hope that the outcome of the Committee’s vote will be confirmed during the plenary session of the European Parliament before the summer break, and that the Council will also adopt its own proposal, opening the way for inter-institutional negotiations,” Deli concluded.