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Forwarders welcome plan to ditch the paper

[ May 22, 2018   //   ]

The Clecat forwarders’ organisation welcomed the EU’s third Mobility Package on 18 May, saying that the proposal it contained to create a fully digital environment for information exchange in freight transport would help eliminate paper documents.

Director general Nicolette van der Jagt said: “Requiring acceptance of electronic formats for transport information as legally equivalent to paper format by enforcement authorities is a sine qua non. We are glad that the Commission has now taken concrete action to tackle authorities’ different degrees of acceptance of information of documents made available electronically by business.”

Clecat’s manager for digitalisation, Dominique Willems, added: “Current and future technology provide ways to fully rethink these processes and create tangible efficiency benefits and new opportunities. We are very pleased to see that this way of thinking is fully reflected in the Commission’s proposal.”

Clecat said that it was equally pleased that many of its recommendations have been taken on board by the Commission in its revision of the Regulation for a European Maritime Single Window, saying: “We are confident that this pan-EU legislative initiative can ensure that electronic communication is possible in all member states and for all relevant authorities. Most important is that this can happen in a harmonised way, whereby a common data set is also enforced.”

Ms van der Jagt concluded: “For freight forwarders and customs agents, sharing and re-using data is part of their core business, either because of legal requirements or because of customers’ or other supply chain partners’ demands and wishes. We therefore welcome this initiative which encourages and supports the sharing and re-use of data. There is still a lot of work to be done by all parties involved. However, we are confident that this will lead in the long term to less administrative burden and a positive case for business.”

Clecat also praised plans in the package to cut emissions targets for heavy-duty vehicles by 15% by 2025 and 30% by 2030.

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