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Freight transport logistics action plan

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Freight transport logistics action plan

Freight transport logistics is a driver of European Union (EU) competitiveness. It covers the planning, organisation, management, control and execution of goods transport operations.

ACT

Communication from the Commission - Freight transport logistics action plan (COM(2007) 607 final of 18 October 2007)

SUMMARY

Freight transport logistics is a driver of European Union (EU) competitiveness. It covers the planning, organisation, management, control and execution of goods transport operations.

WHAT DOES THE ACTION PLAN DO?

It contains short- to medium-term measures. It is one of a series of policy initiatives that the European Commission has launched to improve the efficiency and sustainability of freight transport in the EU.

KEY POINTS

e-Freight: the use of information and communications technology (ICT) could enable the physical flow of goods to be accompanied by a paper-free, electronic flow of information.

Bottlenecks: almost 500 have been identified ranging from insufficient infrastructure to administrative hurdles. These can be tackled by training for skilled staff, use of performance indicators and better statistical data.

Transport chains: simplifying administrative requirements through the use of a single document for all forms of transport and clear liability rules could reduce costs and red tape.

Weights and dimensions: EU legislation sets limits on vehicle weights and dimensions. However, some discretion is still left to national authorities as regards weight aspects. A review of the legislation in 2012 resulted in the adoption of revised EU rules in 2015. These aim to improve the aerodynamics of vehicles and their energy efficiency.

Green transport corridors: these integrated routes would enable freight to be transported with a reduced environmental impact via a combination of short sea journeys, rail, road and inland waterways, and of relevant technologies (such as ICT used in intelligent transport systems).

Urban freight: Europe’s towns and cities are often the destination for freight that has travelled long distances. Town planning should take this into account.

Other related EU initiatives include:

the Connecting Europe Facility, which makes finance available for cross-border and other core transport network projects;

Blue Growth, which highlights how transport by sea, which is less polluting than land transport, helps reduce greenhouse gas emissions;

the maritime spatial planning directive, which increases cooperation between EU countries in areas such as shipping lanes;

the European Commission’s ‘Roadmap to a single European transport area’, which identifies ways to remove major bottlenecks for the transport of goods and people.

BACKGROUND

The logistics industry is estimated to contribute almost 14 % to EU GDP. It has enjoyed major growth in recent years, particularly in container trade. This has led to congestion in some ports and surrounding areas.

RELATED ACTS

White Paper: Roadmap to a single European transport area - Towards a competitive and resource-efficient transport system (COM(2011) 144 final of 28 March 2011).

Last updated: 26.06.2015

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