Brussels, 21 April 2009
Measures to help road haulage companies survive the economic crisis were discussed at a stakeholder hearing in Brussels organised by the European Commission. The hearing has attracted about 100 representatives from European road haulage associations, the Commission, the European Parliament and the European Investment Bank with the aim to collect first-hand information from stakeholders on the effects of the recession and to identify ways forward.
Commission Vice-President Antonio Tajani, in charge of transport policy, said: "The road transport sector is the most important pillar for the exchange of goods in the internal market. This stakeholder meeting helps all actors better understand how serious the consequences of the economic downturn on road transport undertakings are. At the same time it is clear that short term measures should not be taken at the expense of market integration and the objective of a sustainable transport system. The crisis must be used as an opportunity to modernise the transport sector."
The participants reviewed the impact of the crisis, its effects in terms of employment, the role of transport innovation, and future business and policy perspectives. The speakers included amongst others Mathieu Grosch and Bogusław Liberadzki, members of the European Parliament, Matthias Ruete Director General of Transport at the European Commission, Eduardo Chagas Secretary General of the European Federation of Transport Workers, Paolo Uggé, former Transport Secretary of State in Italy and President of Italian association Conftrasporto as well as Pere Padrosa, President of the Goods Transport Council of the International Road Union.
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