Correspondence with Ministers October 2006 to April 2007 - European Union Committee Contents


Letter from the Chairman to Stephen Ladyman MP, Minister of State for Transport, Department for Transport

  Sub-Committee B considered these documents, and your Explanatory Memorandum, at its meeting on 9 October 2006.

  We are pleased that in your view the Commission has made good progress since 2003 to implement the proposed measures, and share your desire to encourage and promote Short Sea Shipping.

  We note your doubts over the necessity of Action Point 3, and your view that any further standardisation should be industry-led. Do industry representatives share your view?

  We will maintain scrutiny on this proposal at this stage.

10 October 2006

Letter from Stephen Ladyman MP to the Chairman

  Thank you for your letter of 10 October concerning the above Communication and the associated Explanatory Memorandum.

  Your Committee asked whether industry shared the Goverenment's view that any further standardisation of loading units should be industry-led. The Government's position is based on the industry views expressed in a widespread UK consultation when the Commission issued its original proposal for an Intermodal Loading Units Directive in 2003 (Explanatory Memorandum 8523/03 and 9265/04). Industry took the firm view that there was no need for additional EU standards for such containers as existing standards set through international bodies such as ISO and CEN were sufficient. There is no indication that they have changed this view. We believe that industry is best positioned to develop containers to suit market needs. An example of this is the increasing use of non standard, 45 foot long containers shaped to meet the constraints of road vehicle dimensions. We will, of course, review industry's position with their representatives, if the European Commission does decide to resurrect its proposal in future.

10 November 2006

Letter from the Chairman to Stephen Ladyman MP

  Thank you for your letter of 10 November 2006, Sub-Committee B considered your letter at its meeting on 27 November.

  We were grateful to you for your clarification of the views of UK industry, based on your consultation in 2003, and for your assurance that industry will be consulted further should the Commission revisit its proposal to standardise loading units further. We share your view that "industry is best positioned to develop containers to suit market needs".

  We are content to lift scrutiny on these documents.

29 November 2006

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