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European Commission seeks to enhance requirements for Ukraine in road transport agreement

Tuesday, 5 March 2024, 14:17
European Commission seeks to enhance requirements for Ukraine in road transport agreement
Photo: Getty Images

The European Commission proposed to extend the agreement on road transport with Ukraine, but decided to introduce changes to it instead on 5 March.

Source: European Pravda, citing the European Commission.

The Commission said that the proposals include updating the agreement with Ukraine "to improve its practical implementation and enforcement while maintaining its objectives and scope."

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The initial agreement was signed in June 2022 and later extended until the end of June 2024. A similar agreement was signed with Moldova. The agreements grant bilateral transport rights to Ukrainian, Moldovan, and European hauliers within each other's territories.

Due to the disruption or closure of traditional transport routes in the region caused by Russia's aggressive war against Ukraine and the unavailability of the Black Sea as a traditional trade route for both countries, extending the agreement at least until the end of 2025 will help secure supply chains, the Commission said. 

Additionally, the Commission stated that it decided to amend the agreement with Ukraine "on the basis of exchanges with Member States, Ukraine and stakeholders."

The proposed changes would:

  • make obligatory the carrying of documents showing that a transport operator is duly authorised to perform international carriage, and that the transport is being carried out under the Agreement;
  • make obligatory the carrying of specific documents certifying that an unladen operation is directly linked to a transit or bilateral operation, as required under the Agreement;
  • strengthen compliance by road haulage operators with obligations relating to operations authorised under the Agreement, fighting fraud or forgery of driver documents and road safety-related traffic offences: such offences may lead to the withdrawal of the licence;
  • add a new safeguard clause: in case the national road transport market in a specific geographical area sees a major disturbance that can be attributed to the Agreement, the agreement could be suspended in that geographical area.

At the same time, the Commission emphasised that the agreement has been highly beneficial for both the EU and Ukraine, enabling a significant increase in their exports to each other's markets.

Background:

  • Polish hauliers resumed protests at the Ukrainian border on 1 March, suspended in January. 
  • This has significantly worsened an already difficult situation with the passage of goods. Read more about what is happening at the border and what has changed with the return of the hauliers' blockade in European Pravda’s report.

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