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Achieving low emission mobility targets (Communication)

EESC opinion: Achieving low emission mobility targets (Communication)

This Communication of the second "Europe on the Move" package addresses three key political priorities:

•           Europe that protects the planet

It is critical that the EU promotes the next generation of CO2 emissions reduction standards for transport. This will provide a clear signal to the market and help maintain the EU's leadership in addressing climate change. In this package the EC proposes several mesures for achieving this goal: the revision of the Clean Vehicles Directive which will help to stimulate additional public demand for these vehicles in the EU; the revision of the legislation on combined transport which will stimulate the combined use of trucks and trains, barges or ships for the transport of goods, by making it more competitive compared to road freight transport only; and a proposal to revise the Directive on passenger coach services which will improve the mobility of citizens by stimulating the development of bus connections thereby offering alternative options to the use of private cars and increasing the use of sustainable public transport modes.

•           Europe that empowers its citizens

The freedom for citizens to move unhindered across the Union’s territory is a major achievement of the European Union. It has enabled people to travel smoothly between Member States, be it for business or leisure. The EU has a duty to its citizens to facilitate and make freedom of movement easier across borders. So, we must pay attention to facilitating consumers' access to affordable new and cleaner forms of mobility and make sure that the benefits of these new mobility services are available to all and are spread evenly throughout the Union. New technologies and innovative and collaborative business models make the mobility system more sustainable. However, we must avoid that they create a digital divide, causing new inequalities or depriving some regions or areas from the benefits derived from these innovations.

•           Europe that defends its industry and workers

The EU automotive sector is among the world's biggest producers of motor vehicles, providing jobs for 12 million people in manufacturing, sales, maintenance and transport. The EU ambition is to make the European industry stronger and more competitive in the long term. Innovation, digitisation and decarbonisation are the key to sustaining Europe’s leadership in the automotive industry of the future. However, the ongoing industrial transformations are also putting significant pressure on the workforce to adapt; they must therefore be accompanied by measures to ensure a smooth transition and increase resilience so that people and communities are able to take advantage of the new opportunities. These measures must address new job requirements, support lifelong learning and support workers in the transition between jobs by actively helping those in the affected sectors who may need to move out of the sector to retrain and find new jobs.