Policy Brief
Aviation and multimodal digital mobility services in the EU
27 July 2023
BY: MONTERO-PASCUAL Juan J., Matthias Finger, DE ABREU DUARTE Francisco Miguel
Multimodal digital mobility services (MDMS) are instrumental to fostering multimodality as they promote comparability, transparency, and the selling of products across operators and modes. MDMS stand to directly benefit passengers by helping them to navigate, access and compare an increasingly complex and diverse range of transport offerings. Services that support multimodal transport can also render transport more efficient and sustainable by improving the consumer access to broader variety of transport options. As part of its Sustainable and Smart Mobility Strategy (SSMS), published in 2020, the European Commission committed itself to assessing the need for regulatory action on rights and duties of multimodal digital service providers and to issuing a recommendation to ensure public service contracts do not hamper data sharing and support the development of multimodal ticketing services, together with an initiative on ticketing (Action 37). In view of this, a public stakeholder consultation for the implementation of MDMS was carried out, and a legislative proposal to advance MDMS is planned for 2023. This Commission initiative will seek to implement Action 37 of the SSMS and address existing challenges for MDMS services. The latter will focus on ticketing, booking and payment services by addressing a number of market-related problems, namely potential resistance by some transport service providers to provide access to all their data to other actors (much more present in rail) and potential discriminatory practices by online intermediaries in access to their services. Remedies in the form of access regulation can be considered, but what kind of access obligations? What lessons might be learnt from horizontal regulation (particularly the Digital Markets Act and the Data Regulations): asymmetric regulation, FRAND access conditions? Whether the liberalisation and competition of the EU Aviation Market necessitates a lighter form of regulation? Against this backdrop, the 11th Florence Intermodal Forum brought together stakeholders representing aviation policymakers, airlines, travel intermediaries, meta-search companies, consumer organisations, and academics, among others, for an aviation-focused discussion on multimodal digital mobility services in the EU.
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