Caroline Nagtegaal, a Dutch member of the European parliament (MEP), has penned a letter to the European Commission (EC) in support of ESTA's calls to develop heavy transport corridors and harmonise the permit issuing process across Europe.
The European association association of abnormal road transport and mobile cranes' campaigns aim to establish heavy transport corridors across Europe and reduce the bureaucracy caused by the maze of different permits required by member states.
Her action follows a meeting earlier in March with ESTA director Ton Klijn who detailed the problems being faced by exceptional transport companies across Europe.
The timing of the MEP’s intervention is significant, according to ESTA, as talks are currently under way in Brussels on the financing of key infrastructure networks from 2021 to 2027 as part of the Connecting Europe Facility.
Those discussions include a request from European armed forces and NATO to strengthen the continent’s infrastructure to make it easier to move heavy military loads.
Nagtegaal asked the EC whether it had plans to reduce bureaucracy and simplify licensing arrangements for exceptional transport. She called on the commission to focus on the digitalisation of permits for abnormal road transport operations, something that is already happening for normal truck transport within the European Union (EU).
She said: “I am optimistic that my and ESTA’s concerns will be taken seriously and acted upon because it fits into the EU’s Connecting Europe strategy, something that is high profile.
“I will also be raising this issue with colleagues active in the transport sector and with other countries within the European Parliament’s Liberal Group. ESTA’s concerns are a clear example of how the internal market needs to be developed and reformed.”