VILNIUS - Lithuanian officials say they expect the European Parliament (EP) to listen to the arguments of those who assert that plans to require trucks to return to their country of registration every eight weeks would harm the EU internal market and increase pollution.
Simonas Satunas, Lithuania's deputy permanent representative to the EU, noted that late Monday's vote at the EP's Transport Committee on the so-called Mobility Package, a set of rules to regulate the EU's transport industry, should be followed by a plenary vote in a month.
"We hope that the EP will assess the consequences of some provisions of the Mobility Package, in particular the mandatory return of trucks, and their adverse effects on the EU's internal market and pollution," the diplomat told BNS.
"Let me remind you that the European Commission has undertaken to carry out and is carrying out an impact assessment of the truck return provision, something we have not had until now," he added.
Lithuania and some other Eastern and Southern Europeans oppose the proposal to require trucks to return to their country of registration every eight weeks, saying the new rules will push transport companies from peripheral countries out of the market and will increase road pollution.
The initiators say, however, the mandatory return of trucks will help combat the practice of registering fictitious transport companies in lower-tax countries.