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Passenger transport industry calls for political recognition at IRU international coach conference

24 Oct 2017

IRU and Busworld unite the international road passenger transport industry at Europe’s leading industry trade fair to launch a campaign positioning coach transport as a ‘people’ business – delivered by people to people, connecting people.

In a joint statement by IRU and BusWorld, supported by bus and coach associations, manufacturers and tourism organisations from across the EU, the industry insisted on the need for people’s collective mobility needs to be properly addressed. To date, the regulations covering the sector have consistently failed to represent the specific needs of customers and service providers. A mobility service to people should not be treated in the same way as the transport of goods.

The European Commission’s Mobility Package provides a not to be missed opportunity to address this imbalance. The sector, for example, must have driving and rest time rules that reflect the service that buses and coaches provide to people. This must include reinstating the 12-day derogation for driving rest periods to properly support tourists and the wider tourism industry that depends on these services.

Remi Lebeda, who leads IRU’s EU passenger transport work, said, “For too long bus and coach transport has been ignored by the European Union’s decision makers. This must stop. Buses and coaches are part of the mobility solutions to a greener more sustainable future. The citizens of Europe deserve better from their decision makers.”

The joint statement was issued to all exhibitors and visitors at BusWorld Kortrijk, Europe’s largest bus and coach trade fair. It also formed the basis of discussions at the successful IRU & BusWorld Academy Conference at the fair that examined the future of coach tourism.

IRU is also working with key industry partners, including senior representatives from manufacturers, to continue leading the way to make the voice of passenger transport more strongly heard.

With more than 300,000 companies, many of them small businesses, directly employing more than 2 million people, the sector is of crucial importance to European people’s mobility and prosperity. Indirectly the industry supports millions more jobs and provides services to multiple other industries.