Lead MEP calls for 25% EV target for 2025
In his parliamentary report Bas Eickhout MEP (Greens, NL) suggested that the European Commission should adopt a target to ensure at least a quarter of all vehicles sold by EU manufacturers run on electricity by 2025. Mr Eickhout leads the European Parliament’s work on the EU’s low-emission mobility strategy, and seeks to boost the uptake of electric cars by urging member states to speed up the deployment of infrastructure for alternative fuels. According to figures released by the European Environment Agency, EVs only represented 1.1% of all new vehicle sales in 2016, down from 1.2% in 2015. Up to 12 countries could face legal action by the Commission for failing to produce their national roll-out plans required under EU law.
Eickhout’s draft position also called on the Commission to set CO2 limits for both cars and vans at 70 g/km by 2025 and 50 g/km by 2030. CO2 standards for heavy-duty vehicles in 2025 should be presented "without delay”, it added, in line with the draft recommendation being discussed in the environment committee.
However, the Commission’s proposal is only expected to come out around Easter 2018. The mobility strategy was tabled by the Commission last July, and the transport committee is set to vote on the Parliament’s position in September. European Lubricant Manufactures should take note of the MEP’s announcement and monitor the Commission’s upcoming work in order to anticipate this change in the market going forward.
Brexit: start of negotiations
In March UK Prime Minister Theresa May triggered Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union, and will thereby start the 2 year negotiations leading to the UK leaving the EU. On the EU side, the institutions start to gear up for the upcoming negotiations. The European Commission adopted its draft negotiating directives for the negotiations, based on the political guidelines which were unanimously agreed by the European Council at the end of April. These were adopted on 22 May by the General Affairs Council thereby authorising the formal opening of the negotiations.
Around the same time Theresa May called for a general election on 8 June in the UK. Stakeholders in the debate hope that the election will lead to more clarity in relation to the upcoming Brexit negotiations, as prolonged uncertainty could be harmful for the political and economic relationship of European Union and the United Kingdom.
It remains to be seen what impact the Brexit-related changes to the existing European Single Market will have on the competitiveness of both EU and UK industries. The European Single Market provides for a high level of economic and regulatory integration for the industry. This level of integration is reflected in how it has strategically set up its business operations in terms of supply chains, production sites and distribution networks.
On the regulatory side, the UK’s departure from the European Single Market could result in e.g. a EU Regulation on type approval no longer applying to the United Kingdom. Potentially, this means that type-approval certificates issued by the UK’s national type approval authority VCA may no longer be valid in the EU.
UEIL is watching the negotiations closely as both parties around the table try to come to a solution that works for both the EU and the UK.