Thursday

18th Jan 2018

Transport to lose billions from EU border checks

  • Increased internal border checks are likely to cause transport delays. (Photo: dmytrok)

EUobserver understands transport experts at the European Commission are analysing the potential economic blowback should border controls become more severe throughout the passport-free Schengen area.

Arrien Kruyt, vice-chair of the Meijers Committee, a Dutch independent experts' group, told this website the European Commission is analysing possible transport costs should internal borders reappear.

Thank you for reading EUobserver!

Subscribe now for a 30 day free trial.

  1. €150 per year
  2. or €15 per month
  3. Cancel anytime

EUobserver is an independent, not-for-profit news organization that publishes daily news reports, analysis, and investigations from Brussels and the EU member states. We are an indispensable news source for anyone who wants to know what is going on in the EU.

We are mainly funded by advertising and subscription revenues. As advertising revenues are falling fast, we depend on subscription revenues to support our journalism.

For group, corporate or student subscriptions, please contact us. See also our full Terms of Use.

If you already have an account click here to login.

Kruyt, who attended a meeting on the issue with commission officials at its transport branch on 28 January, said on Thursday (4 February) conservative figures put forward hover at "around €6 billion".

The commission's transport spokesperson neither confirmed nor denied the study or the figure but instead referred back to a speech earlier this week at the European Parliament by EU commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker on safeguarding Schengen.

Juncker had previously said at a press conference that border checks in Europe would cost road transport companies €3 billion a year in lost revenue.

Juncker's €3 billion figure comes from the Geneva-based International Road Transport Union (IRU), an association that represents bus, coach, taxi and truck operators.

Its branch in Brussels told EUobserver the real figure is likely between 3 to €10 billion, depending on border delays.

"The potential for just the road transport industry could be as high as €10 billion depending how severe the delays and border crossings become," said IRU spokesperson Stuart Colley.

Around 6 million people are employed in land and passenger transport with several million trucks transporting goods throughout the EU on a daily basis.

Colley cited estimated costs per vehicle somewhere between €55 and €70 per hour of delay.

"That is in terms of fuel, lost contracts, in terms of drivers' wages," he said.

Other possible factors include penalties for delivery delays, which may force companies to hire out more truckers to provide the same service. Perishable goods like food may also be at risk.

Trade between EU states in 2013 was €2.8 trillion.

The European Commission, for its part, briefly highlighted the concerns in its 200-page Winter Economic Forecast.

The report, out Thursday, says "the long term reintroduction of internal border controls" may disrupt economic growth in the internal market.

It notes the public perception of the increased number of refugee numbers may also thwart economic confidence.

Economic affairs commissioner Pierre Moscovici said any risk to Schengen would be "political and an economic mistake".

In a study published earlier this week, French public think-tank France Strategie estimated the total loses throughout the EU at over €100 billion by 2025.

"Widespread permanent border controls would decrease trade between Schengen countries by a factor of 10 percent to 20 percent," it noted.

Would the euro really be in danger without Schengen?

EU Commission president Juncker and chancellor Merkel say there is a direct link between the euro and Schengen, but the single market would not necessarily falter with the reintroduction of border controls.

Stakeholder

Impact of the refugee crisis on the EU transport sector

The ALDE Group recently hosted a hearing on the human and economic impact of the refugee crisis on the EU transport sector, which would be one of the hardest hit sectors if the Schengen system falls apart.

MEPs target exports of cyber surveillance tech

MEPs have introduced a human rights clause into the export of cyber surveillance technology as part of EU-wide reforms to prevent abuse by autocratic regimes. The Strasbourg plenary will vote on the bill on Wednesday.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic Solutions for Sustainable Cities: New Grants Awarded for Branding Projects
  2. Mission of China to the EUTrade Between China, Belt and Road Countries up 15%
  3. Nordic Council of MinistersOresund Inspires Other EU Border Regions to Work Together to Generate Growth
  4. Mission of China to the EUTrade Between China, Belt and Road Countries up 15%
  5. AJC Transatlantic InstituteAJC Calls on EU to Sanction Iran’s Revolutionary Guards, Expel Ambassadors
  6. Dialogue PlatformRoundtable on "Political Islam, Civil Islam and The West" 31 January
  7. ILGA EuropeFreedom of Movement and Same-Sex Couples in Romania – Case Update!
  8. EU2017EEEstonia Completes First EU Presidency, Introduced New Topics to the Agenda
  9. Bio-Based IndustriesLeading the Transition Towards a Post-Petroleum Society
  10. ACCAWelcomes the Start of the New Bulgarian Presidency
  11. Mission of China to the EUPremier Li and President Tusk Stress Importance of Ties at ASEM Summit
  12. EU2017EEVAT on Electronic Commerce: New Rules Adopted

Latest News

  1. Nato prepares to take in Macedonia
  2. Taking full benefit of supercomputers in Europe
  3. Spitzenkandidat system 'difficult to get rid of', hopes lead MEP
  4. Rights NGOs face fresh threats across the EU, agency says
  5. EIB 'more sensitive' to fraud after Dieselgate, chief insists
  6. EU 'hypocrisy' condemns people to Libya, says NGO
  7. Next year's EU election at risk of Russian meddling
  8. Hungary to tax NGOs that 'help' migration