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Debate on the future of mobility with the European Parliament, Commission, city authorities and stakeholders

Publication date: 16 April 2015

On 15 April 2015, European Parliament Vice-President Adina-Ioana Vãlean hosted a lunch debate on the future of mobility. The lunch featured guest speakers Carlo Pettinelli, Director for Sustainable Growth and EU 2020 of the European Commission, Steve Newsome, Head of EU and International Affairs of Transport for London, and Antonio Perlot, Secretary-General of ACEM, the trade representative of motorcycle manufacturers. Also present were Members of Parliament Adam Gierek (S&D) and Merja Kyllönen (GUE/NGL).

MEP Vãlean expressed the importance of fostering the development of connected cars, as they will create new business opportunities in Europe. Therefore legislators should secure a level playing field to ensure fairness for all players. She also stressed the need to focus transport policies on economic competitiveness rather than increasing the number of environmental regulations and advocated for standardising data exchange platforms regarding intelligent transport systems.

Carlo Pettinelli emphasised the importance of the car industry in the European economy. He reported on the progress of the CARS 2020 process, which he said had been very successful. Mr Pettinelli said that Commissioner Bieñkowska will be launching a follow-up initiative in September 2015 that will focus on new mobility trends, in particular on the multimodal use of transport by consumers. In regards to the European car industry, he said that its competitiveness should be ensured, and that it should be integrated in the world car market. In order to achieve this goal, the Commission advocates promoting a European approach to global regulation on issues such as automated driving, driver data protection and liability.

Steve Newsome explained that despite making progress on CO2 emissions, London still needs to improve its rate of NO2 emissions, which is produced for the most part by diesel engines. He called on European institutions to create a European fund for clean air, which would help finance local authorities' programmes, and to set up an emissions database to monitor the air quality in European cities. Mr Newsome also advocated for allowing cities to decide which programmes work best for them to attain better air quality. Among the programmes that London is launching to tackle its pollution and mobility issues he showcased a plan to have goods delivered by bike and foot in the city. This programme would also help to reduce the number of cyclists killed by trucks and he regretted the delay in the implementation of safer cab design for trucks until 2022.

Antonio Perlot said that the motorcycle industry had suffered greatly in recent years. The recovery has begun but it needs clear and timely regulations, legal security, and access to credit for SMEs. He explained that the sector has opportunities of growth, since many countries need to renew their vehicle fleets. Manufacturers also see opportunities for expansion outside of Europe. Mr Perlot also said that electric vehicles should be at the forefront of new urban mobility.


The debate was organised by the Forum for Mobility and Society.

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