European Commission outlines the main challenges for the transport sector in the next decade

The European Commission has adopted today a strategic document that outlines the main challenges for the transport sector in the next decade and identifies the key actions that would help face them. A reflection process launched by the European Commission, involving stakeholders and transport experts, identified 6 main trends - aging, migration and internal mobility, environmental challenges, the availability of energy resources, urbanisation and globalisation. This demonstrates the need to focus future European transport policy on the pursuit of an integrated, technology-based and user-friendly transport system.

"Transport has been and will remain an essential component of our daily lives. It has contributed substantially to the development, integration and growth of the internal market with tangible benefits to the European economy. European transport policy has also raised standards for the sector such as improved working conditions, higher safety and security conditions as well as the strengthening of passenger rights. I believe that the time is ripe to throw this policy forward. Firstly by further integrating different transport modes, by putting the EU at the forefront transport services and technologies and thirdly shaping this future transport policy on the needs and rights of both transport users and workers," said Vice-President Antonio Tajani, responsible for transport.

The main conclusions of today's Communication are:

European transport policy has helped to provide an efficient mobility system to EU people and businesses. It now has the task of ensuring that this mobility can be sustained in the future.

Environmental sustainability, ageing, migration, fossil fuel scarcity, urbanisation, and globalisation are key tendencies in our society and will pose challenges to our system of mobility.

Accelerating the introduction of innovative technologies and the full integration of the different transport modes is crucial to meeting those challenges. This in a context in which transport users and employees, with their needs and rights, are always kept at the centre of policy making.

It is important to advance the external projection of European Transport Policy, as a way to ensure further integration with the neighbouring countries and the promotion of Europe's economic and environmental interests in the global context.

The Communication does not include a detailed programme, but rather tries to identify a strategic vision for the future of transport. With its adoption the European Commission wants to stimulate further debate in order to identifying concrete policy proposals for its next Transport White Paper scheduled for 2010.

For more information

MEMO/09/279 and