European institutions officially adopted the European Cycling Declaration

In doing so, they commit themselves to concrete actions aimed at unleashing the full potential of cycling in the EU.


4. April 2024.

On April 3, all three European institutions, the Council, the Parliament and the Commission, signed the European Declaration on Cycling, an initiative that recognizes cycling as a well-rounded mode of transport.

The European Declaration on Cycling recognizes bicycle transport as one of the most sustainable, accessible and inclusive, cheap and healthy forms of transport and recreation, and highlights its key importance for European society and economy.

The document will serve as strategic compass for existing and future policies and initiatives related to cycling.

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The declaration was signed on the sidelines of the meeting of European transport ministers Adina Valean, Commissioner for Transport, Karima Delli, president of the Transport Committee of the European Parliament and George Gilkinet, Deputy Prime Minister of Belgium, representing the Belgian Presidency Council.

"We recognize the countless benefits of cycling: it reduces pollution, thins city congestion and promotes a healthier lifestyle", she stated Adina Valean, the European Commissioner for Transport.

"Today we celebrate the adoption of the European Cycling Declaration as a truly historic achievement. This declaration has the potential to unlock the benefits of cycling for millions of European citizens, reflecting many of ECF's long-standing advocacy and policy demands", she said Jill Warren, executive director of the European Cycling Federation (ECF). 

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"Since cycling has been elevated to a strategic priority, we are ready to support institutions in realizing its full potential as a healthy and sustainable means of transportation.", she added.

Through the jointly adopted Declaration, the institutions commit themselves to concrete actions aimed at unleashing the full potential of cycling in the EU, categorized into eight key principles:

  • Developing and strengthening cycling policies
  • Encouraging inclusive, accessible and healthy mobility
  • Creating more and better cycling infrastructure
  • Increasing investment and creating favorable conditions for cycling
  • Improving road safety and protection
  • Supporting quality green jobs and developing a world-class European cycling industry
  • Supporting multimodality and cycle tourism
  • Improving cycling data collection

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Of course obligations - such as safe and coherent cycling networks in cities, better connections with public transport, safe parking spaces, installation of e-bike charging stations and cycle highways connecting cities with rural areas - are considered necessary to improve quality, quantity, continuity and attractiveness cycling infrastructure in all member states.

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Photo: Pixabay


Safety is a prerequisite for encouraging cycling, because cyclists are very vulnerable - namely, as many as 9 percent of those killed in traffic accidents in the European Union are cyclists.

"In addition to safer infrastructure such as segregated cycle lanes, all elements of a safe access system should apply to both bicycles and cars", she stated Vălean in October 2023.

This includes safe speeds and road use and adequate enforcement of road traffic rules, said the European Transport Commissioner at the official presentation of the Declaration in Seville. 

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"In addition to safety, this Declaration will help foster high-quality jobs, including training and cycle tourism. A total of 2022 million bicycles were produced in the EU in 14,7, which is an increase of 29 percent compared to the period from 2012 to 2022.", she pointed out.


The cycling advocacy associations - the European Cycling Federation (ECF), Cycling Industries Europe (CIE) and the Confederation of the European Cycling Industry (CONEBI) - enthusiastically welcome this decision. 

Cycling organizations congratulated the collaborative and consultative approach that led to this Declaration, not only with the European Parliament and the Council and within the Commission, but also with key external stakeholders - including cities, regions, Member State officials, associations, companies and NGOs represented in To the expert group of the Commission for Urban Mobility (EGUM).

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"This is a key turning point for cycling. We are pleased that the Declaration reflects many of ECF's long-standing advocacy and policy demands aimed at increasing and improving cycling in Europe, such as creating more and better cycling infrastructure and encouraging inclusive and accessible mobility", the executive director of ECF commented on the announcement last year Jill Warren.

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Photo: Pixabay

"We have long advocated for a single EU cycling policy that would put cycling on the same level as other transport modes and industry sectors in the EU, freeing up more coherent policy support, greater consistency across the bloc's member states and billions in investment. The Declaration lays new foundations by integrating all the key areas necessary for a successful cycling ecosystem for society and business", he said Kevin Mayne, CEO of CIE.

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"The bicycle, e-bike, parts and accessories industry in Europe highly appreciates the Commission's proposal for a European Declaration on Cycling. Its implementation will help further develop and grow the cycling sector as a central partner in the EU mobility ecosystem and as a world-class European cycling industry", he continued Manuel Marsilio, general director of CONEBI.

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Six countries joined forces in June 2022 for the European Cycling Strategy. Mobility ministers from Belgium, Luxembourg, Denmark, the Netherlands, Austria and Ireland signed a declaration calling on the EU to "implement a real cycling policy" and to declare 2024 the European Year of Cycling. 

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The document further states that the EU should prioritize cycling in its climate strategy and make citizens aware of the benefits of cycling.

So far, five other bloc countries have signed the European Cycling Declaration, led by Belgium, which calls for increased use of bicycles, as well as funding for cycling.

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It was adopted in the Committee for Transport and Tourism of the European Parliament in January 2023. resolution on cycling strategy of the European Union, which was almost unanimously voted by the Parliament the following month. The resolution called for a series of concrete actions to double cycling in Europe by 2030.

In October 2023, the European Commission officially launched the European Cycling Declaration as an initiative of the European Union. The executive vice president of that institution, Frans Timmermans, promises a "cycling revolution" from July 2022.

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Cover photo: bearfotos / Freepik 
Source: Official Journal of the European Union


4. April 2024.