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Federal Minister Andreas Scheuer:

We have to make mobility in Europe more modern and more innovative. Climate change is transforming our world, and we have to tackle the enormous challenge it poses and rethink mobility. Our New Mobility Approach is to be a single approach comprising three pillars: sustainability, mobility and digital transformation. We have to take climate friendliness as the starting point of our endeavours and as a stimulus for innovations in Europe. The corona issue will also continue to preoccupy us. We have to learn from the crisis and emerge from it strengthened and united. To this end, we intend to develop a European pandemic contingency plan for freight transport. Because so far there have been no Europe-wide arrangements for the key transport infrastructures and modes of transport to be taken in the event of pandemics. I am going to change that and introduce uniform standards and procedures.

Background information:

On 1 July 2020, Germany will assume the presidency of the Council of the European Union (EU). This means that, from July to December 2020, Germany will chair the meetings of the EU Council and will be responsible for progressing EU legislation.

The core task of the German EU Council Presidency will be to make mobility in Europe more modern, more innovative and more sustainable – and learn our lessons from COVID-19.

Re the Corona pandemic:

Europe is to emerge from the crisis strengthened:

  • we need reliable supply chains throughout Europe and, to this end, we intend to develop a European pandemic contingency plan for freight transport.
  • we need uniform and clear rules and emergency mechanisms for cross-border freight transport during a pandemic, and we therefore intend to establish the benchmarks for a pandemic contingency plan.
  • we need high-capacity and modern corridors in Europe – and thus rapid and satisfactory agreement on the Multiannual Financial Framework (which covers the next six years).

Re the New Mobility Approach:

The “New Mobility Approach” will be our response to the European Commission’s “Green Deal”.

This means: we intend to pursue a single approach comprising thee pillars: climate change mitigation, mobility and digital transformation.

  • Exchange of data: We want to enhance the efficiency of the existing infrastructure with the help of digital solutions by creating a common platform and improving the connectivity of the data available in the individual member states.
  • Autonomous driving: If, in the future, vehicles are to operate without a driver, they will require real-time data – from a shuttle bus to remote localities to interconnected inland waterway vessels. For this, we need 5G networks providing universal coverage throughout Europe and a corresponding fibre optic rollout. Because this is the only way that we can progress these innovations and safeguard the Union’s competitiveness.
  • Climate- friendly mobility: We intend to gear mobility systematically to climate- and environment-friendly technologies. For this to happen, we need the Europe-wide development of the refuelling and charging infrastructure. For air traffic, this means specifically: we have to establish minimum shares. Our long-term objective is to make flying carbon neutral. In road transport, we intend to lay the groundwork for the revision of the EU Directive on the deployment of alternative fuels infrastructure (AFID), which has been announced for 2021. The changeover to climate-friendly vehicles will also be supported by a pricing system for road use in Europe that is based on CO2 emissions. For this reason, we intend to reach a balanced compromise on the Eurovignette Directive.