UNTRR


PRESS RELEASE, 18.08.2017: UNTRR requests President Iohannis to defend firmly the Romanian hauliers’ interests upon the visit of the French President to Romania. UNTRR denounces the French protectionism in the transport sector and the hypocritical preoccupation of France with “equal payment for equal work”, applied selectively only to employees, but not to Romanian hauliers, who are paid below the French reference cost

23.08.2017

PRESS RELEASE

 

UNTRR requests President Iohannis to defend firmly the Romanian hauliers’ interests upon the visit of the French President to Romania. UNTRR denounces the French protectionism in the transport sector and the hypocritical preoccupation of France with “equal payment for equal work”, applied selectively only to employees, but not to Romanian hauliers, who are paid below the French reference cost

 

The National Union of Road Hauliers from Romania – UNTRR - requests President Klaus Iohannis to defend the interests of Romania and of the Romanian road transport sector upon the official visit that President Emmanuel Macron is to pay to our country on 24th August 2017, at the meeting approaching the topic of posted workers, which is an important item on the French agenda.

We should recall that the French President, Emmanuel Macron, is the author of ‚loi Macron’, a protectionist law whereby France imposes the payment of the French minimum salary and burdensome administrative measures on the Romanian and Eastern European hauliers, for the purpose of removing them from the French and European international transport market. The European Commission is currently implementing an infringement procedure against the enforcement of ‚loi Macron’ in the transport sector, because it creates administrative barriers preventing the operation of the domestic market and affecting the free movement of services and goods.

In this context, we would like to point out that France and other Western European states are extremely interested in the current European process of revising the Posting of Workers Directive, that they intend to use as a tool against more competitive employees and services from the Eastern European member states. By means of the abusive application of this Directive in the transport sector, the situation was reached when a Romanian driver operating international transports in EU is considered as posted to all the Western-European states where they operate during a month, and their Romanian employer has to pay them different salaries in the same month, according to the national laws of France, Germany or Austria. UNTRR requests the clear exclusion of professional drivers operating international road transports from the scope of application of the Posting of Workers Directive, considering that road transport is a very specific economic activity, intensely mobile in character, which cannot be included in the scope of application of some regulations that are not specific to the sector, such as the Posting of Workers Directive.

Romania should firmly oppose the French protectionism in the transport sector and the hypocritical preoccupation of France with equal payment for equal work, applied selectively only to employees, but not to transport companies that are paid below the French reference cost.

The preoccupation of France and other Western states with the payment of a minimum salary to Eastern European drivers is merely a pretext, the real objective being the increase in the operating costs of road hauliers from Eastern Europe. We should mention that the Romanian drivers that operate international transports in France and EU are very well paid, earning incomes between EUR 1,800-2,000 a month, which, according to statistics, exceed the incomes earned by 98% of the Romanian population. Therefore, the accusation of social dumping against the Romanian road transport companies is ungrounded; moreover, we should point out that the incomes earned by Romanian hauliers are by 30-50% lower than the incomes earned by the French ones. The much lower rates paid to Romanian hauliers by the French clients or shippers render void any advantage of the Romanian hauliers arising from salary costs, being, actually, additional incomes for the French shippers, which are charged according to the French legislation.

According to the National Road Committee (CNR) from France (www.cnr.fr ), a French road freight transport company may not operate below the reference cost of EUR 1.25. Therefore, a French company is paid, in general, at a rate of EUR 1.5/km (CNR reference cost + profit margin), whereas a Romanian road transport company is paid, for the same service, at a rate of only EUR 1/km. In most cases, clients pay at a rate of EUR 1.5/km the French hauliers or shippers, while the latter pay the Romanian subcontractors at a rate of only EUR1/ km. French companies pay taxes in France on the profits made from this agency.

If France desires the application of the principle „equal payment for equal work in the same place” to Eastern European employees, according to ‚loi Macron’, then the Romanian companies should equally benefit from the same principle, namely „the same rates for the same services in the same place”, through the simultaneous application of the French legislation regarding the CNR reference cost, because, only by obtaining the same (higher) rate for an international transport operation in France, a Romanian haulier would be able to cover the (higher) salary cost in France, as well as the additional administrative costs generated by the compliance with ‚loi Macron’.

Further, UNTRR requests President Klaus Iohannis to add on the agenda of the official meeting with the French President, Emmanuel Macron, the item of the French law that prohibits Romanian professional drivers from taking their usual weekly rest in the truck cabin. Such a national law contravenes to the provisions of the EC Regulation 561/2006 regarding driving time and rest periods for professional drivers. This European Regulation has remained unchanged since 2006 up to the present, and, all this while, has been construed by the European Commission and by all the member states for the purposes of allowing drivers taking the usual weekly rest of 45 hours in their vehicle cabin.

The national law enacted by France is a national protectionist interpretation of the European Regulation, being construed against Romanian and Eastern European hauliers and not against the French ones, who, obviously, would take their rest at home and not in the cabin. Moreover, France requests foreign drivers to sleep at hotels, although it is a well-known fact that, in France and in the entire EU, there is a serious shortage of safe and secured parking lots, providing safe accommodation for foreign drivers and for their vehicles and freight. Moreover, since 2014, France has not submitted a list of safe parking lots with accommodation spaces for drivers. The French authorities have responded the UNTRR requests late, the latest response received being occasioned by the visit of the French President to Romania.

The visit of the French President to Romania is an opportunity to approach openly the current challenges, and to agree on long-term economic and social harmonization solutions, surrendering national protectionist measures and developing further, together, the European project, because Europe would be stronger and more competitive, if remaining united. In this context, UNTRR requests the active involvement of the Romanian President in the defence of the Romanian transport sector and of the European values Romania adhered to.

 

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The National Union of  Road Hauliers from Romania (UNTRR) is a professional employers’ organization, which is non-governmental, independent and apolitical; it was set up in 1990 according to democratic principles, promoting and defending the interests of road hauliers at a national and international level, having, from its creation up to the present over 14,000 members - operators of domestic and international freight and passenger transports.

 





Last page edit: 08/23/2017

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