A recent proposal by the European Commission has the potential to simplify registration processes and to reduce formalities associated with moving automobiles throughout the EU. This means that citizens and their vehicles will be in a position to travel with more ease between member states.
According to the 2010 EU Citizenship Report, vehicle registration in the EU is problematical because of the confusion regularly caused about the place where one is to register one’s vehicles, long and complicated procedures, cumbersome documentation and repetition of technical inspections.
These concerns – which in 2012 affected some 3.5 million Europeans who travelled in cars between member states – are currently dealt with by national legislation and, often, the Commission and the European Court of Justice are asked to intervene to solve particular cases.
With a view to eradicate these unnecessary burdens, the EC proposal would remove the requirement for second-hand car owners in another EU country to undergo additional technical controls and administrative red tape. EU citizens who spend part of the year in a holiday residence in another EU country would also not be required to re-register their car in such country.
Furthermore, people who move permanently to another EU country would have six months to re-register their car while those working in another EU country who use a car registered by their employer would no longer be bound to register it in their home country.
Car-rental companies would also benefit from this proposal in view of the fact that throughout holiday periods, they would be able to transfer cars to another EU country without re-registration. This will consequently have the potential of lowering the price of car rentals.