IRU members from the European Union have adopted new positions and plans on behalf of the industry in three key areas: the driver profession, the Trans European Transport (TEN-T) Network and Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS).
The Ukraine crisis, innovation and decarbonisation, and implementation of new EU rules on market functioning were also high on the agenda in Brussels as IRU members from across the EU came together for three days of debate.
IRU members in the taxi and goods transport sectors also elected new leaders for their membership bodies.
New IRU positions
IRU’s decision-making bodies for passenger and goods transport in the EU adopted an action plan on improving the attractiveness of the driver’s profession.
This plan focuses on removing legislative barriers, including by establishing a special regime for the recognition of professional drivers’ licenses originating in third countries, improving drivers’ working conditions, exchanging good practices and improving the image of the profession of drivers in the EU.
IRU members also adopted an IRU position on the revision of the EU Trans-European Transport Network (TEN-T) regulation. IRU calls for more ambitious targets regarding safe and secure parking areas, goods terminals and multimodal passenger hubs at urban nodes, and for the completion of the extended core and comprehensive networks.
In addition, IRU adopted a new position on the European Commission’s legislative proposal regarding Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS). While encouraging easy and comprehensible access to infrastructure data to be made available by National Access Points, the road transport sector reiterates its call to keep sharing of operators’ data voluntary. It further emphasis the key role of platform interoperability in the data economy.
IRU passenger transport members decided to engage in a partnership with the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) to match private bus and coach operators with Ukrainian refugee transport needs.
IRU has launched a Ukraine crisis hub that will bring together examples on how the sector and IRU members can help with humanitarian efforts, facilitation measures for humanitarian transport, and how routes and business are affected by the Ukrainian crisis.
IRU goods transport members also debated the recent dramatic increase in energy prices and called for immediate action to avoid massive bankruptcies in the sector and wider economic issues.
New leadership elected
The IRU Taxis & Hire Cars with Driver Group (TA) elected new leadership. Sonila Metushi from Dutch member KNV was elected President. Armand Joseph-Oudin from the Union Nationale des Industries du Taxi (UNIT) in France and Pierre Steenberghen from GTL in Belgium were both elected as Vice Presidents.
IRU’s Goods Transport Liaison Committee (CLTM) for the EU elected Elmer de Bruin from Dutch Road Haulage and Logistics Association TLN as President. Vytautas Naudužas from the Lithuanian National Road Carriers’ Association LINAVA and Dirk Saile from the German Road Haulage Association BGL were elected Vice-Presidents.