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Volume 979: debated on Tuesday 19 February 1980

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asked the Minister of Transport if he will seek changes in the EEC tachograph regulation as it affects outlying areas of the United Kingdom through the legislative processes of the Community in consultation with other member Governments facing similar problems.

Only the Commission may propose Community legislation. Member States do not have the right of initiative. I would however welcome changes, to both the tachograph regulation and the drivers' hours regulation, designed to take better account of the needs of remote areas and islands, and I will take any opportunity which arises to bring these about.

asked the Minister of Transport what special steps he will take to meet the needs of those parts of Scotland where there are not enough approved tachograph centres; and if he will publish the details of a special modified standard for centres in such cases.

I have already agreed in principle to a modified standard for the approval of tachograph centres in remote areas, which will greatly reduce the capital investment needed and make it possible for a tachograph centre to make a profit even in areas where there are few commercial vehicles. The details of the scheme are now being finalised and will be announced very soon.