Ecopoints system heads for conciliation
EU governments have confirmed a controversial stand on continuation after the end of this year of Austria's ecopoints system regulating transit lorry traffic. The common position was approved by majority with Austria, Belgium, Italy and the Netherlands voting against, as they did when ministers reached political agreement on 31 December (EED 03/01/03). MEPs will now scrutinise the proposals again and are expected to maintain demands for stronger encouragement for cleaner vehicles tabled at first reading (EED 27/01/03). This makes it likely that the dossier will eventually be finalised through the conciliation procedure. See council minutes.