Mobility Package 1

The European Parliament approved on 09.07.2020, with a majority of votes, the formalization of discriminatory practices in European road freight transport by adopting the controversial legislative proposals of the Mobility Package 1, without taking into account the unprecedented emergency situation in which it finds itself The European Union and obviously ignoring the economic reality faced by the road transport sector, already severely affected by the COVID-19 crisis.

The decision of the European Parliament marks a turning point for the European Union, by abandoning the basic principles of the single market, such as the free movement of people and services. Under the pressure of national political interests, the Members of the European Parliament approved major European regulations without a solid analysis, in contradiction with the EU Treaties and the objectives of the EU Ecological Pact.

Estimated losses

Experts warn that the Mobility Package 1, the provisions of which will apply starting this year, will have a strong negative effect on Romanian carriers and on Romania, with major economic consequences. In the medium and long term, Romania will lose approximately 200,000 professional drivers, including their families, and will face an unprecedented crisis on the labor market. At the same time, we estimate that we will lose 30% of the Romanian transport operators who will not be able to survive the coronavirus crisis, and half of the remaining companies that operate international road transport will leave Romania before 18 months, the entry into force term of all the provisions of the Mobility Package 1 .

Obligations imposed

It should be noted that although the changes to the European regulations brought by the Mobility Package 1 will theoretically apply under equal conditions to all Member States, in reality their impact is significantly different. Romanian and Eastern transport operators will be the most affected, as the proposals in the Mobility Package 1 lead to the impossibility of carrying out international road transport in Western Europe by Eastern European companies.

  • Duty to return trucks home every 8 weeks.
  • Restriction of cabotage by introducing a 4-day restriction period, as well as application of cabotage rules for initial or final road segments performed in a host Member State within combined transport operations between Member States.
  • Forced application of the Rome 1 Regulation in the road transport sector, together with the restrictive provisions of the special law on the application of posting rules to road transport, which establish the exemption from the posting rules for bilateral and transit transport and a maximum of 2 cross-trade international road transport operations .
  • Mandatory return of drivers every 3 or 4 weeks and ban on taking the normal weekly rest in the cab. Companies are obliged to arrange the return of their drivers to a specific place – the operational center in the company’s Member State of establishment or the driver’s place of residence.
  • Vehicles over 2.5 tons operated in international transport will be included in the rules regarding access to the market (cabotage) and to the profession (licensing), and the measure will apply 21 months after the entry into force of the new rules established by the Mobility Package 1. Also, vehicles over 2.5 tons operated in international transport or cabotage will be included in the application of the rules regarding driving and rest times from July 1, 2026.

When do the provisions of the Mobility Package 1 apply?

The Mobility Package 1 will enter into force upon publication in the Official Journal of the EU, but the application of its provisions will begin on various dates after publication:

  • The posting rules will apply 18 months after publication.
  • Rules regarding driving and rest times, including driver returns, will apply 20 days after publication.
  • The truck repatriation rules and other changes to the market access rules will apply 18 months after publication.

The Romanian transporters permanently demanded the rejection of the project supported by the western countries. After its adoption, the representatives of the National Union of Road Transporters of Romania (UNTRR) and the Romanian MEPs asked the Government to attack this legislative package at the Court of Justice of the EU (CJEU) in order to support the interests of the domestic transport sector.

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