Italy incidents, road rule revision & footie farce

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Transport could bring down the Italian government, after tempers flared between the two ruling parties over a cruise ship crash in Venice. EU and regional election results are also playing havoc with an ambitious rail link between Turin and Lyon. PM Conte might resign if the squabbles don’t stop.

The European Parliament’s transport committee took a hammering in the May poll, with initial estimates saying only 16 of its members are returning to the EU assembly. That includes current chair Karima Delli and two vice-chairs.

Road rules are changing, including speed limits and fines for distracted drivers. France is going to scrap a lower limit after pressure in local communities told, while Wales wants to go in the other direction.

Last week’s Europa Cup final in Azerbaijan drew the ire of green campaigners, who denounced the carbon footprint of the all-English final. Arsenal and Chelsea had to fly over 4,000km to play the match, despite their own London stadiums being just 13km apart.

France is making good on a pledge to revamp competition policy: a new proposal prompted by the nixed Alstom-Siemens rail tie-up wants the rules relaxed.

The International Air Transport Association’s annual financial stocktake of the airline industry is out. The top lines are that rising fuel costs will be problematic, North American carriers performed the best and 1% of global GDP is spent just on air travel.

E-bikes are all in the range in Germany: analysis shows that their market share is near to reaching a million riders. It’s increased by over 30% since 2017.

The Bundesrepublik is also doubling down on electric cars, extending a billion-euro bonus scheme until 2020 in order to spark interest.

German trains were first to display EU colours, now its air carrier will: Lufthansa will show the blue and yellow of the Union on all its planes next to the national flag.

The European Council wants a long-term EU space strategy and wants more coordination between everyone involved. Full conclusions here.

What else I’m reading this week:

  • NYC says not so fast to e-scooters [New York Times]
  • Ferrari accelerates its move into hybrid cars [Reuters]
  • Tesla collapse would boost European carmakers [Bloomberg]
  • Shortage of electric vans thwarts British Gas [The Times]

Next stops:

Transport ministers meet in Luxembourg on 6 June to talk hired vehicles rules, road charging and rail passenger rights. Full agenda here.

Ministers will also be briefed on a proposal to scrap daylight savings time across Europe. But there’s likely to be no major progress either under the Romanian presidency or the following Finnish mandate, due to the scope of the task.

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