European Union transport ministers meeting in Luxembourg have failed to agree on the Dutch presidency’s proposals to create a common toll system across Europe for heavy goods vehicles.
The so-called “Eurovignette” plan has run into heavy opposition from ministers in member states on the geographical periphery of the bloc, including Spain, Portugal and Greece. The talks have now been postponed for the second time and will resume in December. The tabled proposal takes account of the European Parliament’s position that funds raised from a common toll system can be invested in the transport sector. The European Commission, however, has said the cash must be spent on improving transport and related infrastructure across Europe. Portugal said the Eurovignette proposal must respect the principles of sustainable development, while at the same time not damaging the competitiveness of peripheral states.