FEPORT Position on Combined Transport Trilogue

European Union, Ports & Terminals — By on February 6, 2019 at 5:45 PM

Lamia Kerdjoudj-Belkaid

Revision of Combined Transport Directive

Brussels, February 6th, 2019  – FEPORT warns: Combined Transport Directive Proposal should be adopted in line with Aiuto Report otherwise there is a major risk of fragmentation of combined transport rules.

Ahead of the 13 February trilogue meeting, FEPORT, the European organization representing the interests of private port companies and terminals, urges the European institutions to agree on a compromise text in line with the Aiuto Report. FEPORT believes this is crucial to ensuring combined transport remains an attractive mode of transportation, and subsequently reducing transport emissions and congestion on road networks.

FEPORT considers that derogation to Member States to define what constitutes a combined transport operation must be avoided at all costs. Such derogations would lead to a fragmentation of rules which would only serve to make combined transport less attractive to shippers and forwarders.

From the port operator’s perspective, a pan-European approach to transport rules is crucial given that European ports act as not just national, but also pan-European gateways for cargo. The legislative framework for transport, including combined transport, needs to respect this reality.

Ms. Lamia Kerdjoudj-Belkaid, FEPORT Secretary General, stressed “the objective of the revision of this Directive is to create a framework that incentivises the shift from long haul road freight to lower emission transport modes such as inland waterways, maritime and rail. The institutions must keep in mind whether any agreement will ultimately assist the European Union in achieving this”.

Ms. Kerdjoudj-Belkaid continued, “FEPORT strongly believes that the Aiuto Report provides the necessary framework to achieve this due to its clear rules at European Union level which will assist in the growth of combined transport”.

Concluding, Ms. Kerdjoudj-Belkaid suggests “that if this EU approach cannot be maintained, and what we arrive at is a patchwork of different combined transport rules, then many businesses would seriously consider calling for a withdrawal of the proposal”.

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