1 Introduction |
1. Land transport security measures seek to prevent
acts of unlawful interference against passengers, freight or transport
infrastructure in the road and rail sectors. Unlawful interference
includes anything from terrorism to relatively minor crime against
passengers and transport operators. While there are EU legislative
requirements in the aviation and maritime security sectors, this
is not the case with land-based transport.
2. The European Commission's 2011 White Paper,
Roadmap to a Single European Transport Area - Towards a competitive
and resource efficient transport system, places transport security
high on the EU's agenda and describes "a need to find an
appropriate European approach to land transport security in those
areas where EU action has an added value".
As a first step, the Commission's White Paper recommended setting
up a permanent expert group on land transport security.
This group was established by a Commission Decision on 31 May
2012. At the same time
the Commission published a staff working document on transport
security, which provided an overview of potential areas for the
development of EU land transport security policies.
While the Commission has not brought forward any legislative proposals
in this document, it has suggested areas of consideration, which
might lead to recommendations for legislation at a later stage.
3. The Government has already expressed reservations
to our colleagues on the European Scrutiny Committee about the
need for the sorts of EU activity on land transport security proposed
in the Commission's document. The European Scrutiny Committee
shared the Government's concerns about possible subsidiarity issues
and asked us for a formal Opinion on the Commission's document.
The Committee further suggested that "the views of both the
Government and the industry, as to what might be acceptable at
EU-level be sought".
We published a call for evidence on 1 November 2012 seeking views.
We received 10 written submissions and heard oral evidence on
21 January 2013. We are grateful to those who provided oral and
4. In this report we assess the current land
transport security arrangements in the UK and reaction to the
Commission's staff working document. We also seek to answer the
question of what further EU involvement in land transport security
might be desirable. Our conclusions on this matter form the basis
of our Opinion to the European Scrutiny Committee and we hope
that this report will inform future discussions on land transport
security in the House of Commons. While we have focussed on the
UK perspective on land transport security we intend to pursue
this subject further, in the first instance with representatives
of the European Commission during our upcoming visit to Brussels.
1 European Commission, Roadmap to a Single European
Transport Area - Towards a competitive and resource efficient
transport system, March 2011, para 38 Back
European Commission, Roadmap to a Single European Transport Area
- Towards a competitive and resource efficient transport system,
March 2011, Annex 1 Back
European Commission Decision of 31 May 2012 on the creation of
an Expert Group on Land Transport Security (2012/286/EU) Back
European Commission, Staff Working Document on Transport Security,
31 May 2012, (SWD(2012) 143 final) Back
European Scrutiny Committee, Eighth Report of Session 2012-13,
HC 86-viii, para 6.8 Back