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European Parliament calls for strengthening automotive industry competitiveness
Brussels, 16/01/2008 - The European Parliament has given an important statement on the need to improve the regulatory framework for the European automotive industry, by voting in its plenary session, yesterday in Strasbourg, in favour of the report on CARS21 by the Industry Committee rapporteur Jorgo Chatzimarkakis (ALDE, Germany). “The Parliament has clearly recognised the crucial role which ‘better regulation’ principles have to play in the EU decision making process to ensure that sufficient lead-time is provided to implement new requirements and legislation is preceded by a transparent, thorough assessment of the impact on EU competitiveness and employment levels’, said Ivan Hodac, Secretary General of the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA).
The Parliament has also underlined the need to improve road safety and reduce CO2 emissions from cars through an integrated approach, involving all relevant parties in a coherent policy framework. In this context, the report stresses that mandatory targets for CO2 emission reductions cannot enter into force before 2015. In addition, the Parliament called for ‘realistic’ targets. The report states that limit values should be set according to the weight of the vehicle.
The Parliament, furthermore, urges the EU member states to reach an agreement on the Commission’s proposal to harmonise car taxation in relation to CO2 emissions. “Harmonisation of car taxation is extremely important, in order to avoid further internal market fragmentation stemming from the very different schemes currently applied and introduced by the member states”, said Hodac.
Regarding road safety, the report calls on the Commission to ensure that vehicle safety equipment requirements be introduced in accordance with better regulation principles and stresses the need for an integrated approach incorporating vehicle technology improvements, infrastructure measures, education and information and traffic law enforcement.
One of the most extensive parts of the report focuses on establishing fair trade relations, ensuring reciprocity and safeguarding the competitiveness of the European automobile manufacturers. The report calls on the Commission to step up efforts to combat import of counterfeit spare parts and to ensure that Free Trade Agreements always aim at an ambitious market access to the partner country. Regarding the current EU-Korea FTA negotiations the Commission has been urged to make sure that Korea abolishes existing non-tariff barriers and does not create new ones, and that it implements more UN/ECE regulations.
In the field of research & development the EP calls on the Commission to increase significantly the R&D funding for the automotive sector before 2012 and urges the Member States to increase their investment in automotive related R&D, especially in relation to the national CO2 emission reduction targets. The report concludes by pointing to the importance of the car industry for employment, growth, innovation and competitiveness. “Our industry plays a vital role in society. CARS21 shows the way to improving the EU regulatory framework, facilitating important societal needs such as growth, environment and road safety. We will continue to give input to this important process’, said Hodac.
Note to the editor: CARS21 stands for Competitive Automotive Regulatory System for the 21st century. A highlevel group of Commissioners, automotive CEOs and representatives of trade unions, NGOs and other stakeholders has made recommendations in 2005, followed by a Commission Communication in 2007. An evaluation is foreseen for 2009. CARS21 urges EU governments to increase the automotive industry’s competitiveness while also making further progress in enhancing road safety and improving the environment.
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The European automobile industry is key to the EU economy. The sector employs 2.3 million people directly and indirectly supports the jobs of another 10 million families. The industry is the largest private investor in research &
development in the EU, with R&D expenditure of 20 billion euro annually. The ACEA members are: BMW Group, DAF Trucks, Daimler, FIAT, Ford of Europe, General Motors Europe, MAN Nutzfahrzeuge, Porsche, PSA Peugeot Citroën, Renault, Scania, Toyota Motor Europe, Volkswagen and Volvo.
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- Diesel Emissions Conference, & Adblue Forum 2013 Europe, 18-20 June 2013. ACEA members get a 20% discount on the registration fee.
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