Freight News, Road

FTA slams €40 fee to drive in France

[ May 16, 2017   //   ]

The French government says it will charge a €40 fee for every temporary worker, including truck drivers, in the country employed by a foreign company – described by the Freight Transport Association (FTA) as a restrictive practice.

It would severely curtail the ability of UK logistics operators to work effectively in continental Europe, it said.

FTA said that the French authorities intend to charge a fee of €40 per posted worker for companies providing services on the French soil which are established outside France, a move which is set to come into force from 1 January 2018 at the latest. The fee will be used to maintain a database that will handle all documents required by French authorities for posted workers.

FTA’s head of European policy,Pauline Bastidon, said the new charge “amounts to a restrictive tax on international transport carried out by foreign operators. The fee of €40 per driver is excessive and, simply put, is a protectionist measure designed to close the French transport market to any operator established outside of France.”

It would disproportionately increase the cost of operating in France and coming on top of already burdensome requirements, such as the need to have a permanent representative in the country, the additional charge “is nothing more than a protectionist tax benefitting the domestic French market, and is one which our members wholeheartedly oppose.”

FTA is calling on the European Commission to react strongly and speed up its ongoing legal case against France.

Macron’s new government, due to be appointed the same day, would however have the power to reverse the decision which was made by its predecessors, it pointed out.