The Slovenia Times

Commissioner Bulc presents EU mobility package to MPs


It includes initiatives aimed at increasing traffic safety, encouraging fairer tolling of roads and reducing carbon dioxide emissions.

The Europe on the Move package, unveiled by the European Commission at the end of May, was presented today at a joint session of the parliamentary committees for infrastructure and EU affairs.

Members of the committees were interested the most in the part of the package related to environmental measures, with the Slovenian EU commissioner stressing that they included the principles of fair charging of road tolls on the basis of distance covered.

The European Commission has received a lot of remarks regarding this issue, also from Slovenia, Bulc said, adding that dynamic structures for charging of tolls should be introduced in road transport, which would force those who cause traffic jams and pollute the environment to pay more.

The package also brings new rules regarding rest times for professional drivers, with longer rests having to be taken outside the vehicle.

"The package also brings a reduction of administrative burden by 60%, including for drivers," Bulc said, adding that the new rules would be clearer from the existing ones, which allowed rather different interpretations.

As the European Commission also wants to improve safety in road transport, Bulc called on Slovenian MPs to support its efforts in this respect.

"We can also do a lot with better supervision over truck drivers," she said, adding that tired drivers who work longer than the prescribed hours represented a particular risk.

Infrastructure Minister Peter Gašperšič welcomed the announced changes, especially those in the field of labour legislation. He is convinced that a solution acceptable for hauliers will be found in dialogue with the Commission.

Regarding the transition to electronic tolling, the minister hopes that Slovenia will be able to come up with a system that would be acceptable for drivers who cover long distances on a daily basis.

Gašperšič fears that such drivers would try to save money by opting for regional roads, which could decrease safety.

"The minister's fear, which is also present in the media, is unwarranted," Bulc said, adding that adequate solutions would be found for those who regularly use tolled roads.


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