Fri. May 27th, 2022

Brussels, 28 April 2022

  • Tighten sanctions on Russia’s transport sector
  • More funds for military mobility within the EU
  • Help tourism to help Ukraine

Transport MEPs applaud European transport and tourism operators for helping refugees from Ukraine, demand Russia to return stolen airplanes and ask the EU to tighten sanctions on Russia.

The draft resolution on the impact of Russian illegal war of aggression against Ukraine on the EU transport and tourism sectors, adopted by Transport and Tourism Committee on Thursday by 43 votes to one and five abstentions, welcomes European transport operators help to Ukrainian citizens by offering free travel by train, bus, ship or plane. Same goes for many associations and private initiatives, who provide free transport of goods and persons to and from Ukraine border, MEPs add.

Aviation and maritime

They are concerned about the severe impact the war has on the aviation sector and deplores the fact that Russia, in clear breach of international civil aviation rules, has forced a re-registration of airplanes leased from foreign companies in Russia’s aircraft register. “Such a theft cannot be tolerated”, MEPs say, demanding the immediate return of these aircrafts to their lawful owners.

Transport MEPs also calls on the EU to further tighten sanctions against the Russian maritime sector and to refuse entry at EU ports of ships that have docked in Russia on their way. In addition, all ships that want to stop at EU ports should be forbidden to re-fuel in Russian ports, they add.

Military mobility

European Council decision to drastically cut funds for military mobility was a mistake that undermines European security, transport MEPs say. They call on the Commission to find a solution to significantly increase the military mobility budget under the Connected Europe Facility programme.

EU should help member states to develop the dual use infrastructure and transport interconnections within the EU, but also with Western Balkans, Moldova, Georgia and Ukraine, MEPs add, also advocating for extension of trans-European transport network to Ukraine and Moldova.

Help tourism to help Ukraine

Transport MEPs call on EU countries to support EU hotels and short-term rental services hosting Ukrainian refugees. They also ask the Commission to establish an EU temporary financial programme to support EU tourism companies hiring people fleeing from war in Ukraine.

COVID pandemic and the current war in Ukraine have shown the urgent need for the establishment of an “EU Agency for tourism” and European Crisis Management Mechanism in order to respond adequately and swiftly to crises of great magnitude, such as pandemics, wars, humanitarian crisis impact of climate change, MEPs say.

Next steps

The draft resolution on the impact of Russian illegal war of aggression against Ukraine on the EU transport and tourism sectors now needs to be voted by the full house of the Parliament, scheduled to meet in Strasbourg during the first week of May 2022.