The effects of the crisis on SMEs25 May 2009 - UEAPME/UETR transport forum assesses the effects of the crisis on SMEs. The meeting was opened by Chairman Francesco Del Boca, who focused on the present economic crisis that is clearly taking its toll on the road transport sector. Against this background, Mr Del Boca stressed the urgency of a number of measures, such as ensuring real and effective access to credit, fighting late payments, removing administrative burdens and reducing fuel costs. Maintaining employment levels in the road transport sector is a priority, continued Mr Del Boca, while at the same time the long-term objectives of harmonising and liberalising Europe’s internal market to achieve fair competition in transport services remain valid. Rémi Mayet, Deputy Head of Unit at the European Commission’s DG Transport and Energy, spoke about the European road infrastructure charging policy. His interesting intervention was followed by a debate with members that also touched upon the current crisis. Participants then discussed the state of play on several pending policy issues, such as the Eurovignette directive and internalisation of external costs, the so-called Car Block Exemption, the Working Time Directive, the harmonisation of infringement laws and the better regulation proposal aimed at promoting the use of digital tachographs.
Please find below the programme of the Transport Forum and the speech of UETR President Mr. Del Boca.