In an open letter to the Ministers of EU Member States, issued today, CLECAT, on behalf of the freight forwarding, transport and logistics sector, has reiterated the need to prevent any kind of barriers to the transportation of goods and the uninterrupted movement of transport and logistics personnel. In line with the Commission’s proposal from 25 January 2021 on a coordinated approach to the restriction of free movement in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, transport workers should not be required to quarantine and be exempted from travel-related COVID-19 tests.
CLECAT warns about the dramatic impact that stricter rules and controls on the movement of goods and transport personnel could have on intra-European and international supply chains. Nicolette van der Jagt, Director General of CLECAT, noted: ‘We remain highly concerned with national measures that could, despite the lessons learnt from the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, block freight movement and disrupt seamless supply chains, not least those of critical goods and vaccines. In this respect, we are alarmed by the new requirements in Germany, related to the testing measures for drivers and transport workers, as the entry to German territory of the transport workers coming from the rapidly expanding number of risk areas may be blocked, unless they can provide a negative PCR test. In particular, the logistics sector cannot operate with a patchwork of measures in Europe when it seeks to provide logistics solutions for transporting vaccines.’
CLECAT welcomes the European Commission’s initiative to keep transport moving and ensure the free movements of goods and especially the proposal to exempt transport workers from testing and quarantine requirements. This is important to maintain healthy supply chains and prevent the negative economic consequences for European businesses and citizens. ‘We are pleased that, alongside the need to speed up vaccination, ramp up testing and show international leadership, the European Commission has emphasised the need to preserve the functioning of the Single Market and ensure the non-disturbed flow of goods, as well as the free movement of transport workers across the EU,’ said Ms van der Jagt.