Documents considered by the Committee on 1 March 2017 Contents

9Driver licences for carriage of goods or passengers

Committee’s assessment

Politically important

Committee’s decision

Not cleared, further information requested

Document details

Proposed Directive amending the 2003 and 2006 Directives on initial qualification and periodic training of drivers of certain road vehicles for the carriage of goods or passengers and on driving licences

Legal base

Article 91(1)(c) TFEU, ordinary legislative procedure, QMV

Department

Transport

Document Number

(38499), 5671/17 + ADDs 1–4, COM(17) 47

Summary and Committee’s conclusions

9.1The 2003 Driver Certificate of Professional Competence Directive concerns the initial qualification and periodic training of professional drivers of lorries, buses and coaches of all sizes. A round of consultations in 2013 and 2014 identified four areas for further discussion and potential revision within the Directive: its relevance and scope, minimum age, structure of training, and quality assurance and mutual recognition of the training. The Commission has now proposed this amending Directive to reflect those discussions and update and clarify the four areas examined. It would also make consequential amendments to the Driving Licences Directive.

9.2The Government says that the amendments proposed are relatively minor and tells us of its views on them. These are mainly supportive, but on some amendments it needs Commission clarification.

9.3While we recognise that this proposal could usefully amend the Driver Certificate of Professional Competence Directive, we are holding it under scrutiny pending information from the Government about the Council negotiation of the issue. We wish particularly to hear about the clarifications the Government is seeking.

Full details of the document

Proposed Directive amending Directive 2003/59/EC on the initial qualification and periodic training of drivers of certain road vehicles for the carriage of goods or passengers and Directive 2006/126/EC on driving licences: (38499), 5671/17 + ADDs 1–4, COM(17) 47.

Background

9.4Directive 2003/59/EC, known commonly known as the Driver CPC (Certificate of Professional Competence) or DCPC Directive, concerns the initial qualification and periodic training of professional drivers of lorries, buses and coaches of all sizes. The Directive requires that all professional drivers of these vehicles must, in addition to their vocational driving licence, hold a DCPC qualification, obtained by undergoing an initial qualification and maintained by five-yearly periodic training totalling 35 hours. The qualification is evidenced either by a code on the driving licence or by the holding of a driver qualification card (DQC). The Directive also contained a number of exemptions from the scope of Directive (all of which the UK adopted).

9.5In 2013 the Commission undertook a consultation on the implementation and success of the DCPC Directive. There followed a stakeholder conference in Brussels in March 2014 with participants from the road haulage and passenger carrying transport sectors, training providers, and representative organisations from across all Member States. The consultation and conference concluded that the Directive had improved labour mobility and contributed to the free movement of drivers, but identified four areas for further discussion and potential revision within the original Directive:

The document

9.6The four areas were discussed by Member States representatives in subsequent working group meetings during 2014. The Commission’s proposed amending Directive is intended to reflect those discussions and update and clarify the four areas in the DCPC Directive by making the following amendments:

The Government’s view

9.7In the Government’s Explanatory Memorandum of 22 February the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Transport (Andrew Jones) first reiterates the Government’s standard mantra that, until Brexit negotiations are concluded, the UK remains a full member of the EU, all the rights and obligations of EU membership remain in force, during this period the Government will continue to negotiate, implement and apply EU legislation, and the outcome of these negotiations will determine what arrangements apply in relation to EU legislation in future once the UK has left the EU. He then says that the proposals are consistent with the measures originally identified through a public consultation in 2013 and subsequently refined through a stakeholder conference and working group meetings throughout 2014.

9.8The Minister says that the proposed amendments are relatively minor and that the Government’s views on them are as follows:

9.9The Minister tells us that:

Previous Committee Reports

None.





3 March 2017