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Travel industry demands urgent publication of 12-day derogation


15 Sep 2009



A united European travel industry urges the EU institutions to urgently complete the decision making process and publish the 12-day driving derogation in the EU Official Journal by the end of September.

Brussels – The European Tour Operators Association (ETOA), the European Travel Agents’ and Tour Operators’ Associations (ECTAA) and the International Road Transport Union (IRU) jointly call upon the European institutions and, in particular, on the Council, to complete without delay the formal decision making process that will reintroduce the long awaited 12-day derogation for international coach tourism.

The three leading travel industry organisations insist on an immediate publication of the new rules in the EU Official Journal so that operators, drivers and customers can benefit from the derogation by spring 2010.

ETOA, ECTAA and the IRU are dismayed that bureaucratic procedures within the EU linguistic services have delayed the finalisation of the text. This red tape will now increase the costs for travel businesses that have planned and contracted their services with the assumption of an effective application of the 12-day derogation in early 2010.

In spring 2009, the EU Commission, Parliament and Council had agreed on the wording of the 12-day derogation. This was quickly and formally adopted by the European Parliament in April 2009. Yet the EU’s current Swedish Presidency is still trying to find an opportunity to have the EU Council formally adopt the agreement.

Only after adoption can the text be published in the EU Official Journal. A 20 day pause must be observed before the new rules enter into force, followed by a subsequent six-month wait before any new provision (such as the 12 day derogation) can be used operationally.

The 12 day derogation is of vital importance for European competitiveness in world tourism markets. This new delay postpones its implementation beyond Easter 2010, which will harm inbound tourism and related jobs.

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Press contacts:

· ECTAA, Paolina Marone, +32 (0)2 644 34 50,

· ETOA, David Tarsh, +44 (0)20 7602 5262,

· IRU, Juliette Ebélé, +41 22 918 27 07,

Press Office

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Tel: +41 22 918 27 07

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