In a joint political declaration the ministers of mobility of the BENELUX countries urge the European Commission to prioritise bicycle use within the European Climate policy and the upcoming Strategy on smart and sustainable mobility. They demand to provide co-financing for the construction of cycle infrastructure and to provide means for the stimulation of bicycle policy within the framework of the European Green Deal.
During the Covid-19 crisis and ensuing lockdown bicycle use augmented in almost all European countries. Investments in bicycle policy and infrastructure are essential to reach the 2050 EU climate objectives. Moreover, cycling has other socio-economic benefits, a.o. regarding public health. Within the EU, these benefits are estimated at 150 billion euros, of which 90 billion euros are directly related to environment, health and the mobility system. Within the bicycle industry there are already hundreds of thousands jobs (and rising) en the income generated by bicycle tourism is estimated at 44 billion euros annualy.
The ministers emphasize in the declaration that to further stimulate bicycle use the accessible, high quality and safe infrastructure is essential. Further research to map and monitor the further potential of the bike as common transport mode is also needed. Furthermore they call on other member states to collect and share actual data related to active mobility. The collective data can serve as a foundation for enhancing future investments.
Simultaneously, they address regional and local governments to expand bicycle lane networks, to stimulate bicycle campagnes and to invest in bicycle sharing systems in the coming summer months.
Last but not least the ministers stipulate their ambition to agree on a cross-border roadmap stimulating bicycle use within the BENELUX later this year.