ETF and UITP unite to promote the continuous training of professional bus drivers in urban public transport

10 Apr 2014

The European Transport Workers’ Federation (ETF) and the International Association of Public Transport (UITP) came together this week to sign a joint declaration on the implication, application and further development of Directive 2003/59/EC on the training of professional drivers in road transport.  

ETF and UITP, the European social partners in the urban public transport sector, came together via a joint statement. Whilst ETF and UITP support the Directive as it up-skills the drivers’ profession and thus its attractiveness, the European social partners issued a call to the European Commission for further action to take into account.

Such actions include: ensuring training and examination quality through developing criteria for training centres and the training of trainers; ensuring the financing of initial and continuous training to avoid workers having to finance their own training and measures for the control and enforcement of the Directive’s training and continuous training requirements.

“Initial and continuous training of professional drivers in urban public transport is an investment and not a cost that must be supported by employers,” said Alain Sutour, Chairman of the ETF Urban Public Transport Committee. “The benefits of such training in form of return on investment are high and range from a reduction in pollution and accidents to an increase in the quality of service, the professionalism of drivers and their overall health and safety”.

“UITP and ETF are firmly convinced of the benefits of high quality training for professional drivers to all stakeholders and as such call on the European Commission to implement the afore-mentioned actions to ensure the effective development of the Directive,” added Nicolas Blain, Chair of the UITP EU-Committee.

Note to Editors

The European Transport Workers’ Federation (ETF) is a pan-European trade union organisation embracing 243 transport trade unions from the European Union, the European Economic Area and the Central and Eastern European countries. The ETF is the recognised Social Partner in seven European Sectoral Social Dialogue Committees and represents the interests of more than 2.5 million transport workers from 41 European countries vis-à-vis the European Institutions.

Contact: Sabine Trier, Deputy General Secretary, +32 2 2854667,

The International Association of Public Transport (UITP) is a passionate champion of sustainable urban mobility and is the only worldwide network to bring together all public transport stakeholders and all sustainable transport modes. We have 1,300 member companies giving access to 14,000 contacts from 92 countries. Our members are public transport authorities and operators, policy decision-makers, research institutes and the public transport supply and service industry. Visit our website Follow us on Twitter: @UITPpressoffice

Contact: Andrew Canning, Press & Media Manager, +32 2 663 66 39,

Sylvie Cappaert-Blondelle, Communication Director, +32 2 661 31 91,