Do you broadly support the 10 Goals for competitive and resource efficient Transport
Do you agree with the general thrust of this section of the White Paper?
Identify priority opportunities & challenges proposals (out the relevant part of the 40 proposals)
How can we work together through UKTiE to best promote UK interests. (EU Political influence from a UK Multi-Modal Industry perspective)
Conclusions from Workshop 1 – An Efficient and Integrated Mobility System (ASP 4F384)
Rapporteur: Martin Jones; Scribe; Michal Grinber
- Those in workshop one broadly supported the 10 goals set out in the Commission’s transport white paper, for competitive and resource efficient transport. There was also agreement with the general thrust of this part of the white paper. There was little further discussion on the first two questions.
- The workshop then considered the initiatives outlined in sections 1-23 of the list at the back of the white paper. We spent some time talking about rail as several in the workshop had a direct interest.
A number of points were made:
- the Commission’s proposal to recast the first rail package had caused some concerns from those working in the UK system. Our regulatory system gave considerable discretion to the regulator to decide when and how to act to ensure fair competition and tackle abuse of market position
- but other countries were in a different position, which had perhaps led the Commission to propose a rather blunter and prescriptive approach
- early engagement with the Commission had had some success in influencing the shape of the proposal
- we needed to recognise that other member states perceived the regulatory environment in a very different way. In France and Germany it was quite common to see senior people moving from jobs in major (private sector) national champions into the public sector and back again. This gave business a different appreciation of how Government worked and how to engage.
- there was a need to strike the right balance between achieving the right market objectives and avoiding unnecessarily burdensome administration
In discussion of the other initiatives in the list, it was felt that there was a very clear case for the EU to pursue some (e.g. completion of the single European sky) whereas for others (e.g. quality of services at airports) there was a weaker case. There was some discussion about passenger rights; was it right for the EU to require carriers to provide for passengers affected by “acts of god” when they had paid very low prices for their tickets. Should there be equivalent passenger rights regimes across all modes?
The main theme that came through was that the Commission and other institutions should focus more on implementing legislation that was already there rather than constantly proposing new legislation. Some of the existing legislation might not be perfect but the industry was used to it and understood it. It did not need adjusting at such regular intervals. The Commission should devote more effort to making existing rules work better, and enforce where the law was not being applied properly.
There was some discussion about how UKTiE could work together to promote the interests of UK transport stakeholders. It was noted that there were relatively few senior and influential players, perhaps a dozen or so in the Commission and EP. And a good proportion of those had spoken at the event. This was in itself a good start and was a basis for future engagement. The two UK MEPs on the TRAN committee could advise on other MEPs that would be receptive to UKTiE input. UKTiE could also think about working with industries from other countries where there were shared views.
Conclusions from Workshop 2 – Innovation of the Future: Technology and Behaviour (WIB 05M003)
Rapporteur: Mark James; Scribe: Beril Katz
- There was concern about the origin of the assumptions behind the White Paper. For example the projection on the use of alternative fuels appears to be a straight extrapolation from the position we are in now. The White Paper needs to be seen in the context of previous rather ineffectual similar statements and so the Workshop felt that a delivery plan would be of greater importance. Much of the document was inspirational rather than specific and needed greater detail e.g. it was necessary when looking at say greater use of hydrogen and electric vehicles to evaluate the ‘upstream’ sources of alternative energy such as CO2 emissions incurred in the generation process.
- What problem are we trying to fix? It was felt by the workshop that technology sometimes misses out on the delivery. The technical road map may help us reach the objective. With regard to behaviour again we need to focus on the objective and the Workshop felt that price is the most determining factor.
- The Workshop wanted an emphasis on outcomes and they felt that the White Paper could be better attuned to that. Technological application alone is insufficient and a business case is therefore always necessary. The Workshop was of the view that the priorities needed to be challenged through a combination of three elements a) a common European wide project; b) a business case and c) legislation. It was felt that the European Union should work on the basis of incentives leading to SMART management and that this should be preferred over legislation which was thought to be a very blunt instrument The Workshop felt it was difficult to prioritise the opportunities and challenges identified and that there was an important omission in the document – who is expected to pay for it?
- It was felt by the Workshop that there was a major role for UKTIE in facilitation of market opportunities in Europe and that in many technological areas the UK enjoyed a lead that was of wider European application. Road user charging technology was mentioned in this regard. The UK needed to be more pro-active with regard to Europe and there was a role for UKTIE in pushing for performance based regulation rather than prescriptively based regulation.
Conclusions from Workshop 3 – Modern Infrastructure and EU Funding for Transport (ASP 1E1)
Rapporteur: Mark Watts; Scribe: Anna Negrini
- In general terms there was support for the long term vision of the 10 Goals, but a feeling that they should be more focused on outcomes, not over-prescriptive proposals for how to get there. It was agreed that a one–size-fits-all solution is not the best way of achieving outcomes.
- The White Paper should focus more on how laudable ambitions can be turned into reality. Policies should be more evidenced based and therefore there needs to be more accessible impact assessment process. For example tripling length of high speed rail may be desirable, but is it the most rational policy outcome or use of resources.
- (a) The TEN-T is the key priority, much of the network is desirable but whilst some elements are less of a priority others need greater ambition (e.g. rail links to international airports). But recognising that so much of the financial support needs to come from the private sector more industry led priority setting is vital. Therefore the requirements, maps and funding needs to be shaped by industry input. The best way for the UK industry to respond is to come up with evidence-based suggestions. (b) The principle of Internalisation of external costs has attractions, but it has to be practical and politically acceptable and take into account the international dimension and competitiveness. There is no appetite now, but it is a big challenge and we should engage in the debate and on-going policy development process. The private sector needs to be more involved in that debate.
- (a) UKTiE should push the EU to greater account of the external dimension, trade, technology and strategic land use planning, in the development of transport policy and regulation, so it is not developed in isolation. (b) UKTiE should give a joined up multi-modal UK view of what would help. (c) UKTiE should develop a common position on the White Paper. (d) UKTiE should contribute to TENs, by arguing for industry input into requirements, maps, & funding and develop an evidence-based suggestion for the UK network. (e) UKTiE should promote a ‘market’ view of transport polcy, rather than a ‘modal’ or ‘one size fits’ all view. (f) UKTiE should promote dialogue and debate between UK interests and political, policy and stakeholder interests in other key Member States (e.g. France, Germany).