On 24th September, FIM held its annual reception and policy debate, titled ‘EU Licence Directive: What lies ahead for riders?’. The event gathered the motorcycling community, policymakers, and NGO and industry representatives to discuss the EU Driving Licence Directive, a critical piece of legislation for motorcyclists.
In their opening speeches, Bogusław Liberadzki (S&D, Poland), expert member of the Transport and Tourism (TRAN) Committee, and Jorge Viegas, FIM President, introduced the importance that riders and drivers licencing and training have for road safety. More specifically, they both highlighted that – notwithstanding the objectives of Directive – the additional economic and administrative burden that the text has put on motorcyclists appears to be disproportionate.
Following their interventions, a first-panel session, mostly focusing on the results achieved by the Third Driving Licence Directive (DLD), was introduced by Matthew Baldwin, Deputy Director-General, DG MOVE and European Coordinator for Road Safety, European Commission. In his presentation, Mr Baldwin, present at the FIM Policy Debate for the second year in a row, positioned the DLD within the broader context of the Commission initiatives on road safety.
After Mr Baldwin’s presentation, the first-panel, ‘3rd EU Driving Licence Directive – A new scheme for safer roads?’, officially started, with contributions from Dolf Willigers, Federation of European Motorcyclists' Associations, Antonio Perlot, European Association of Motorcycle Manufacturers, Maria Nordqvist, Swedish Motorcyclists Association, and Mr Baldwin himself.
Mr Luis Escobar Guerrero, DG MOVE, European Commission Legal and Policy Officer started the second panel-session, titled ‘2019-2024: A political impetus for a 4th Directive’. Mr Escobar Guerrero, in his capacity as Policy Officer responsible for the DLD, provided an overview of the evaluation process internal to the Commission that is likely to lead to a revision of the Directive in 2022. Together with Mr Escobar Guerrero, this second panel featured Erika Ebers, Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile Region I, Ellen Townsend, European Transport Safety Council, and Nita Korhonen, Director of the FIM’s Women & Motorcycling Commission.
FIM President Viegas gave closing remarks, expressing appreciation for the positive interactions established among stakeholders on such a critical piece of legislation for motorcyclists. This common understanding should aim at “tackling those unintended and perverse consequences for riders introduced the DLD, re-establishing a fair access to motorcycle driving licence for the young and women”.