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Urgent Appeal for Action: Polish Road Transport Sector Faces Crisis

TSLUrgent Appeal for Action: Polish Road Transport Sector Faces Crisis

Road transport is one of the strongest sectors of the Polish economy. However, dark clouds have been gathering over it for some time now. According to the latest data from GUS, in the first quarter of this year alone, 120 transport companies were liquidated, and 1,400 are undergoing restructuring. The number of restructuring proceedings last year was 120% higher than in 2022 and four times higher than in 2021. It is worth noting that these often involve long-established companies with numerous employees and a high reputation confirmed by multiple awards.

On April 23, international road carriers addressed an open letter to Prime Minister Tusk. On May 10, their appeal was supported by the Ombudsman for Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises, Adam Abramowicz. He pointed out that, due to a combination of various factors—including EU regulations, protectionist practices of some European countries, actions by Polish officials, the global economic downturn, and the emergence of cheaper competition from Ukraine due to non-compliance with social obligations—the sector is in an extremely difficult position. What is particularly outrageous is that this is the consequence of politicians’ incompetence. “In implementing the Mobility Package requirements, other countries in our region, such as Bulgaria, Lithuania, Romania, and Hungary, did so in a way that was as least burdensome as possible for their companies,” writes Adam Abramowicz. “Meanwhile, the previous Polish government imposed burdens on the sector that deprive it of competitive advantages over other Central and Eastern European countries. Reviewing the regulations implementing the Mobility Package is an urgent task for the Ministry of Infrastructure. Unfortunately, I must note that officials are shirking this duty, and the whole matter is an example of how flawed the implementation of EU law can be in Poland.”

In light of the data published by GUS, the need for decisive action concerning the road transport sector is becoming increasingly urgent. Therefore, on May 21, the SME Ombudsman renewed his appeal to the Prime Minister, calling for urgent dialogue with the sector. This is all the more important because its poor condition negatively impacts the health of other sectors.

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