Release Date: 02 October 2007
Release ID: 1328
IRU Academy Seminar identifies causes, consequences and solutions to the increasing shortage of drivers worldwide.
Some 180 participants today attended the IRU Academy’s 5th International Seminar on driver shortage*, a problem which is now of concern to the entire road transport industry worldwide.
During the seminar, professionals from some 40 countries in South America, the USA, Africa, Europe and Asia as well as experts from the European Commission, the International Transport Forum (ITF), the International Transport Workers Federation (ITF), and the International Union of Professional Drivers (UICR), presented their views on driver employment, migration, salaries, social benefits and working conditions, as well as traffic flows and public perception.
Rolf Lehmann, Secretary General of the UICR, stated, “Driver shortage entails operational disturbances and increased costs that will harm road transport’s competitiveness and the economy as a whole. It prevents businesses from growing or merely sustaining themselves and is witnessed in developed and developing countries alike, due to the recent phenomenon of international migration of drivers seeking better payment and living conditions, but also because of the negative perception of the profession amongst youngsters and the public at large.”
Panellists identified as main causes: the global economic growth leading to increasing transport demand, an aging driver population, the low level of attractiveness of the profession (relatively low wages, poor image, and negative impact of the job on drivers’ social and private life) and the transformation of the profession involving new complex training requirements.
Yves Mannaerts, Director of FBAA (Belgian Federation of Bus and Coach Operators and Travel Organisers), concluded, ”the IRU Academy and its supporting partners** will contribute to create solutions, especially to ensure the smooth implementation of the new mandatory Driver Training Regulation (2003/59/EC) by making available, through its network of IRU Academy Accredited Training Institutes (ATIs), the IRU Academy CPC Driver Programme, which provides drivers with international recognition of their quality road transport training!”
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