Officials report that French authorities have published new guidance for the road transport sector, implementing the so called ‘Loi Macron’. The guidelines regulate activities of notably foreign road transport companies when doing transport operations in France. The law states that as of July 1st, 2016 foreign-based drivers that make deliveries in the country must receive the French minimum wage and foreign operators must designate a representative in France.
European shippers have warned of transport chaos that might happen once the new law comes into force.
At this moment there is no clarity about administrative arrangement, if the foreign drivers must carry documents showing they are being paid the minimum wage of 9.67 euros ($10.95) an hour or not.
The European Shippers’ Council said that “hauliers and shippers run the risk of being punished for infringement of rules they could not properly prepare for.”
The European Commission, the European Union’s executive arm, is challenging the French law saying it will create disproportionate administrative barriers that will hamper the 28-nation bloc’s internal market.
The French and German governments are under pressure from their truckers to respond to the threat of East European firms, which pay their drivers much lower wages and have sharply increased their share of the trans-European market.
The ESC and the International Road Transport Union have welcomed the Commission’s move against the French and German regulations. The transport ministers of 11 EU countries — Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia and Malta — have pressed the Commission to take action against the “protectionist practices” introduced by France and Germany, which they say will restrict the free movement of goods and services across the EU.
RCL Agencies will continue to monitor the situation and provide further updates once available.