Hayes welcomes EU Commission action on Vnuk ruling
Brian Hayes MEP today said that it is welcome that the European Commission has taken action to amend the Motor Insurance Directive in order to resolve the potential implications of the Vnuk ruling. The ECJ’s Vnuk ruling is due to be implemented in October 2016 and could potentially shut down motorsports in Ireland.
“It is welcome that the Commission has recognised the serious problems that could arise from the Vnuk ruling. This ruling would mean that from October 2016 all EU Member States are required to make unlimited third party motor insurance compulsory for all vehicles wherever they are used in the EU. This means that racetracks as wells as private farmland and private carparks would have to require compulsory motor insurance, yet there is essentially no market availability for such mandatory insurance.
“Earlier this month, the Commission started the process to correct this problem. Since the ECJ ruling will effectively reinterpret the Motor Insurance Directive to make these rules applicable, the Commission has initiated an amendment procedure for this Directive.
“We are a long way from putting this issue to bed however. The Commission needs to first of all complete an impact assessment which would explore different ways of amending the Directive, some of which may not achieve the necessary result. Following this the Commission has to formally propose the amended legislation to the European Parliament and the Council of Ministers. The amended legislation needs to be scrutinised by both institutions and it is very unpredictable how the amended legislation will be taken up in either institution. Some Member States and some MEPs may argue for stricter rules for third party insurance.
“As an Irish MEP I will be working to ensure that this amendment goes through as swiftly as possible to ensure that places like Mondello Park remain open for business. There is also a serious onus on the Irish government to ensure swift passage of the amendment since it will be heavily involved in discussions at European Council level. While the ruling is to take effect by October 2016, it will be suspended pending an outcome of the Commission’s action on the Motor Insurance Directive.”