Bilateral road transport agreements between Switzerland-Germany and Switzerland-Italy

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Mnenje EESO: Bilateral road transport agreements between Switzerland-Germany and Switzerland-Italy

Key points:

The EESC:

  • is pleased that the Commission has followed up on the requests made by Germany and Italy to be able to conduct negotiations with the Swiss Confederation on new provisions providing for cross-border cabotage operations in road passenger transport services by coach and bus between border regions;
  • endorses the two proposals for a decision submitted by the Commission in response to written requests from the two Member States concerned, which have been met with equally strong interest on the part of Switzerland;
  • would however point to the need to focus on sustainability policies: the carriage of passengers and goods in the Alpine region must be aligned with such requirements, in accordance with the protocol on transport appended to the 2002 Alpine Convention, to which the three interested countries and the EU itself are signatories;
  • considers that the competitive development of carriers engaged in cabotage operations in international road passenger transport services by coach and bus should be flanked by compliance with the new agreements appended to the 1999 EU-Switzerland Agreement, Regulation (EC) No 1370/2007 safeguarding the general economic interest and the Agreement of 1 December 2010 of the European Parliament and of the Council on the rights of coach and bus and car passengers, particularly passengers with reduced mobility;
  • recommends that these negotiations be supported by dialogue between the social partners of the countries concerned, in order to support both the process of opening up to cabotage operations in cross-border road passenger transport and the changes brought about by this process in the specific regions in which it applies, without discrimination between operators established in the EU and without any distortion of competition.