25 ACTIONS For a successful restart of the EU’s automotive sector

05 May 2020

Covid-19 is having a major impact on the economy with retail and manufacturing activity at a deep low and
concerns mounting on consumer sentiment. The European automotive sector is hit particularly hard. Most
activities in the sector were stopped for several weeks, which is an unprecedented situation. Many actors in the
sector are under great economic stress and in need of government support.
As a sector, we want to contribute to a policy response to Covid-19 that ensures public health, minimises the
impact on the economy and maintains a focus on the overarching objectives of our time: the digital and carbon
neutral society.
This paper, issued jointly by the four associations representing the automotive sector from equipment and tyre
suppliers to vehicle manufacturers to dealers and workshops, lists 25 immediate and tangible policy
recommendations. They are designed to help shape the political and regulatory response to the Covid-19 crisis,
ensure the successful recovery of the economy at large and support a forward-looking restart of the automotive

The priorities are to:
• Ensure a coordinated relaunch of industrial activity, in line with public health guidelines,
• Maintain the necessary liquidity for businesses to support a healthy automotive ecosystem,
• Lay the foundation for a sustainable economic recovery, primarily by triggering vehicle demand
and investment in latest technology and innovation.

These priorities translate into 25 key policy recommendations:

1. Issue harmonised guidance on health and safety precautions for the workplace
2. Exempt transport of goods from border closures and align border control measures
3. Maintain the central source of information on border measures set up by the Commission
4. Grant uniform exemptions for cross-border commuting and necessary travel
5. Consider temporary flexibilities in competition rules
6. Use the deferral flexibilities offered by the Union Customs Code
7. Reopen dealerships and motor vehicle workshops as soon as possible
8. Introduce immediate vehicle renewal schemes for all vehicle categories across the EU
9. Reinforce national renewal schemes with direct EU funding
10. Direct EU funding tools at targeted public procurement of new vehicles
11. Start the announced pilot for charging and alternative fuels infrastructure without further delay
12. Speed up and facilitate investment in next-generation digital infrastructure
13. Postpone all non-essential public consultations by at least 2 months.
14. Assess the impact of the Covid-19 crisis on industry-relevant legislation
15. Restart the type approval process as quickly as possible
16. Enforce EU market surveillance of applicable legislation
17. Propose ambitious Alternative Fuels Infrastructure Directive amendments already in Q3 2020
18. Speed up legislative proposals to support uptake of low carbon and low pollutant fuels
19. Reflect “Just Transition” and the Covid-19 recovery in the Skills Agenda
20. Speed up the regulatory work on Digitalisation of Transport
21. Ensure an ambitious Horizon Europe budget to support climate-neutral road transport system
22. Enhance innovation-focussed public procurement in transport and mobility through ESIF
23. Extend the EIB future mobility initiatives to fund innovation
24. Support up- and re-skilling of the labour force
25. Rapidly establish a sectoral Skills Pact for the automotive sector

Read the full paper at this link.