The Transport and tourism committee of the European Parliament adopted on April 7 its opinion on social dumping in transport. The vote took place on basis of the work done by MEP Jens Nilsson (Sweden, Soc Dem) to fight the use of social dumping in the transport sector of the EU. In a vote with broad support from the big political groups in the EP the Committee supported the need for a more balanced approach to road transport policy. Legal loopholes and abuses of existing legislation in order to promote free movement and ensure fair competition. The Committee also called for steps to combat illegal activities, letterbox companies and unfair practices to ensure social protection and legal certainty for drivers and operators.
“NLA is happy that the Committee with 34 votes against 6 adopted a text that makes it clear that unfair competition is not acceptable in the transport industry.” states CEO of NLA Soren Larsen. “This is good signal for the coming discussion on new rules for the road transport in the EU, where we desperately need a broad political support for weeding out unfair practices and illegal activities in order to develop a sustainable road transport industry which is attractive for the future. In a number of paragraphs the Committee stresses the need for control and enforcement. NLA attaches great importance to better control and enforcement particularly through better cooperation between the member states authorities. For this reason we are hosting a event on April 26, 2016 in Bruxelles on how to achieve a better and more effective and efficient enforcement regime in the EU”.
MEP Jens Nilsson commented on todays vote: "We will not accept any trade-off of social conditions or safety for the sake of profit. I regret that I did not get enough support to include penalties for those companies breaching the rules and on the creation of a black list. However, even if I did not succeed in getting all my proposals adopted, I am pleased that the overall opinion included a strong message to the Commission to ensure social protection of employees and to combat illegal activities and unfair business practices.”
The transport committee's opinion will now be analysed by the employment committee in the European Parliament, where S&D MEP Guillaume Balas will draft the final report on social dumping in the EU.