Wednesday, May 26, 2004

French truckers on the move again ... or not

French truckers are complaining again about the fact that they cannot make ends meet. And when French truckers complain others often find that they cannot move at all, as the roads get blocked.

Jean-Paul Grard, president of the UPR truckers' association, told a press conference, that the government had to do something to ensure that French haulier companies survived in business. Specifically, the French government must control European competition. In theory, that is impossible as it would go against single market rules. In practice, we shall have to wait and see.

On the other hand, M Grard clearly understands more economics than the people who set the rules in France and the EU. He argued that these companies must increase their profitability and to that end the government must make working rules more flexible, particularly when it comes to breaks and night-time driving. People, he thought, should be allowed to work more and earn more money if they wanted to.

This is rather a novel idea in the European Union and in France, particularly. Let us hope it all gets sorted out before the French take to the roads in their millions for the vacances annuaires.

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