Agreement with the Freight and Passenger Departments of the National Road Transport Committee (CNTC)

The Government will give a subsidy to hauliers of 20 cents per litre or kilo of fuel and give direct aid of 450 million euros to the sector

News - 25.3.2022

Following the agreement with the representatives of the Freight and Passenger Departments of the National Road Transport Committee (CNTC), the Minister for Transport, Mobility and Urban Agenda, Raquel Sánchez, has announced that the Government will give a subsidy to hauliers of 20 euro per litre or kilo of fuel, of which 15 cents will come from the public budget and 5 cents will be borne by the oil product operators, and will be applied to diesel, petrol, gas and adblue. This benefit will mean more than 600 million euros for the transport sector.

This is one of the specific measures that have materialised, following the agreement reached with the representatives of the transport sector on Monday, by which savings of around 700 euros per lorry per month are estimated and which will be in force from 1 April to 30 June, extendable depending on the evolution of the markets.

This measure, together with direct aid to the sector of 450 million euros, will inject more than 1 billion euros into the sector.

This is one of the measures that the government has presented to the road transport sector as part of the immediate aid plan to alleviate the consequences of the conflict in Ukraine.

The package of measures was agreed at the meeting held today at the Ministry of Transport, Mobility and Urban Agenda (Mitma), which was attended by the First Vice-President of the Government of Spain and Minister for the Economy and Digital Transformation, Nadia Calviño; the Minister for Treasury and Public Function, María Jesús Montero; and the Ministry of Transport, Mobility and Urban Agenda, Raquel Sánchez, on behalf of the Government. The Secretary of State for Economy and Business Support, Gonzalo García, and the Secretary General for Transport and Mobility, María José Rallo were also in attendance.

On behalf of the professional transport sector, representatives of the Freight Departments of the National Road Transport Committee (CNTC) and the associations ASTIC, CETM, FENADISMER, FEINTRA, FETRANSA, FITRANS, ANATRANS, FVET, FETEIA, ATFRIE, UNO; and also representatives of the Passenger Department of the CNTC who, at the meeting held yesterday with the Minister Raquel Sánchez, have already conveyed the urgent requests of the sector.

These measures comprise a comprehensive package with two main objectives:

  • Immediately reduce the price of fuel used by transport operators.
  • Rapid and decisive support for companies in the sector, including direct aid lines and mechanisms to guarantee their liquidity.
  • Social measures aimed at ensuring social protection for the self-employed
  • Measures to make further progress in rebalancing the existing asymmetries between the actors in the road freight sector to improve the position and competitiveness of the road freight sector.

The first group includes the aforementioned fuel subsidy that transport companies will receive and whose agreement includes the provision that the National Markets and Competition Commission (CNMC) will monitor its implementation.

The second group includes the following measures:

  • Direct aid of 450 million euros for freight and passenger transport companies depending on the type of vehicle. The amount will be 1,250 euros per lorry, 950 euros per coach, 500 euros per van and 300 euros per light vehicle (taxis, VTC and ambulances).
  • This will include an extension of the maturity of loans guaranteed by the ICO to 8-10 years, and an extension of the grace period for loans guaranteed by the ICO to 6 months, as an immediately applicable measure.
  • A new line of loans to the sector guaranteed by the ICO will be established with a 12-month grace period.
  • A monthly reimbursement of professional fuel will be established from April, as opposed to the current quarterly period, and a system of monthly advance reimbursement with annual regularisation will be put in place.

As part of the social package, aimed at guaranteeing social protection for the self-employed, the budget allocation for aid for leaving the transport profession will be doubled from 10 to 20 million euros in 2022.

In this sense, the road transport sector is characterised by a significant number of professionals of an advanced age for this type of work, with a lack of resources when it comes to leaving the activity before reaching the age of 65. This situation has a social impact for which the Ministry has earmarked a significant budget item, with aid of 30,000 euros per self-employed person and which, thanks to the agreement reached, will double these amounts to help a greater number of self-employed people to be able to cope with leaving the activity.

And finally, within the set of measures aimed at rebalancing the existing asymmetries between the actors in the road freight transport sector, and thus improving the position and competitiveness of this sector, it has been agreed to accelerate one of the commitments adopted last December, so that before 31 July, Mitma will present draft legislation to the CNTC to apply the principles of the Food Chain Law to the road freight transport sector, to ensure fair use of subcontracting and profitability of work in the sector, and then present it to the Council of Ministers.

The biggest strategic plan for transport in history

The agreement reached today forms part of the Strategic Plan for transport, the largest in history, adding the other actions already carried out throughout the legislature to the immediate aid plan approved today.

Thus, within road freight transport, the recent Royal Decree Law 3/2022, approved by the Government on 1 March and recently ratified by the Spanish Parliament,is noteworthy , and contains measures such as:

  • The prohibition of loading and unloading of goods by drivers, except in very specific cases such as removals, parcel delivery, vehicle cranes or similar.
  • Limiting waiting times in loading and unloading areas to 1 hour, with the right to compensation if this limit is exceeded.
  • The strengthening of the transport inspectorate, which will have more resources to combat fraud, unfair competition and the defence of drivers' working conditions. Here, the inspectorate will also be able to reinforce the control of the conditions under which companies from other EU countries operate in Spain.
  • Mandatory inclusion in all transport contracts of the price revision clause for fuel price variations, applying the formula approved by the Administration.
  • The legal provision to establish a Code of Good Business Practice, which will improve conditions for carriers.
  • MITMA's mandate to adopt a standard for loading and unloading zones in relation to the facilities and services available, both physical and digital, to promote the best conditions and provisions for the well-being of drivers and improved operations.
  • The study to analyse the feasibility of applying the principles set out in the Food Chain Law in relation to its production costs in the road haulage sector, an issue which the agreement presented today makes significant progress on as already indicated, with a first draft text to be presented to the Committee within three months.

All this without forgetting the other measures that do not require regulatory processing, such as MITMA's promotion of subsidies for the construction and adaptation of safe car parks with services available for drivers, with at least 20 million euros, whose call for applications is expected soon, or the design of a plan for the progressive conversion of winter road car parks into safe car parks.

In addition to the previous royal decree law, and within the Recovery, Transformation and Resilience Plan (RTRP), the Government last year allocated 400 million euros in the approved line of aid for the renewal of rolling stock, for which the Ministry of Transport, Mobility and Urban Agenda (Mitma) transferred the first 174 million euros to the regional governments and cities in 2021 that has already allowed several regions to have already started the calls (Basque Country, Melilla, Catalonia, La Rioja, Castilla La Mancha, Balearic Islands). This aid includes both aid for the scrapping of vehicles and aid for the purchase of new equipment and the implementation of a recharging infrastructure.

And all this without forgetting the forthcoming aid for digitalisation of the sector, digital training, etc., which are also part of the recovery plan.

The role of the sector

The agreement, which will be presented by the Committee members to their associations, will have to be endorsed by the sector tomorrow for it to come into force, so that normality can be restored in a strategic sector for Spain.

The vice-president and the ministers once again expressed the Government's commitment to the sector, highlighting the value of the very broad aid plan presented today, which is in addition to the measures already approved during the current legislature, also emphasising that Spain will implement the package of measures in the same timeframe as the countries around us, bearing in mind that professional transport already has the lowest taxation in Europe.

Non official translation