Ministers of Transport are discussing rights of rail passengers and road user charges

Date

2019 12 02

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The issues of rights of rail passengers and road user charges are discussed in the meeting of the EU Transport, Telecommunications and Energy Council (TTEC) held in Brussels on 2-3 December. The Lithuanian position on these issues is presented by Vice Minister of Transport and Communications, Mr. Gytis Mažeika.

 

The Member States of the European Union attempt to coordinate general regulation on rail passengers’ rights and obligations. One of the key proposed provisions is to uniform level of passengers’ protection in the entire EU. It is also suggested in the Regulation to grant more rights to persons with disabilities of restricted mobility.

 

“The single market for passenger rail transport is under development and we need to strengthen it.  The right balance should be achieved between the protection of travellers and the competitiveness of the rail sector. No doubts, that modernizing rail passengers’ rights will lead to higher quality of rail services. The protection of users' rights will help to increase the share of rail transport in comparison to other modes of transport. The needs of disabled persons and persons with reduced mobility should also be highly respected. We are committed to achieve those main objectives,” – said Vice Minister G. Mažeika.

 

The Eurovignette Directive on road user charges is also considered in Brussels. Its purpose is to solve the problems related to emission of greenhouse gas, financing of road infrastructure and transport jams on the roads.

 

“Lithuania has been supporting financially and environmentally sustainable and socially right road user charge in application of principles “the user pays” and “the polluter pays”. In order to ensure proportionality of user charges to duration of infrastructure’s use, the correct and effective price formation is needed. It is also important that the applicable rules were transparent, non-discriminating, effective, and as cost-effective and with as low administrative burden as possible,” – said Vice Minister G. Mažeika.

 

The Vice Minister also draws attention to the fact that the Eurovignette Directive is a part of the EU Mobility Package. “We have to remain consistent in attempt to achieve goals of reduced impact of changing climate and to avoid contradictory provisions in other documents of the Mobility Package, such as demand to return the vehicle to the country of its registration,” – says Mr. G. Mažeika.

 

Digital transport services to passengers were also discussed in TTEC meeting – what measures should the EU undertake to develop these services, what obstacles for digitization, accessibility and use of data arise, and introduction of 5G connection.

 

 

In the photo– new European Commissioner for Transport, Ms. Adina Valean, and Vice Minister of Transport and Communications, Mr. Gytis Mažeika.