• Karima Delli, President of the Transport Committee in the European Parliament has announced that the European Commission will launch a major consultation on the European bicycle strategy.

  • A motion for a resolution will be debated in September before the European Parliament.

  • The objective: to create a bicycle sector in Europe and launch a major industrial policy to boost daily travel, which is only 8%.

In Copenhagen or Amsterdam, 35% of the inhabitants travel daily by bicycle.

In France ?

4% only.

The country “is lagging behind enormously”, observes Karima Delli, president of the transport committee at the European Parliament.

But he is not the worst student in Europe.

If Belgium, Italy or Poland do better, Portugal and Cyprus, for example, record even lower averages: between 1 and 2% of trips are made by bicycle every day.

At a time of climate emergency and energy crisis, "cycling should no longer be considered a hobby, but a mode of travel in its own right", she insists.

Yet that was the case 40 years ago.

In 1982, 82% of European school children walked or cycled to class.

Today, they are only 14%.

A figure that says a lot about the sedentarization of the old continent.

Concrete roadmap

Visiting Lyon, where she was taking part in the “Connecting Europe Days”, a flagship event for mobility and transport in Europe, Karima Delli announced that the European Commission was going to launch a “major consultation” on the European bicycle strategy in order to to “quickly” have a “concrete” roadmap common to all the member countries of the Union and “save time”.

A motion for a resolution will be debated in September before the European Parliament.

"The objective is to move quickly by adopting constrained texts and common objectives, from January," she adds.

Currently, 8% of Europeans use their bicycle as a mode of transport.

A figure that must grow as soon as possible.

And for that, it is necessary to create a bicycle sector, indicates the president of the transport commission.

Relocation of e-bike manufacturing to Europe

For the time being, the measures that could be adopted remain to be determined, as well as the allocated budgets.

But the ideas flow.

“If the French don't cycle, it's because they're scared on the roads.

They are not secure enough, ”underlines Karima Delli, who already sees a first line of work.

For Europe to start pedaling, it will nevertheless be necessary to go further.

"This will necessarily go through an industrial policy which consists in relocating the production of bicycles, in particular electric bicycles, in Europe", she warns, specifying that one million green jobs could result from this sector.

“Today, it takes between 300 and 400 days to assemble a bike here in France.

There is now a real challenge in having all the parts manufactured in Europe”, supports Bruno Bernard, the president of the metropolis of Lyon.

Our bike file

The birth of a bicycle sector will also go through the development of the necessary infrastructures such as bicycle garages, maintenance or electric battery production sites, the installation of hubs at the entrance to metropolitan areas.

“We need pilot territories to boost the sector,” says Karima Delli, citing Lyon as an example.

And to conclude: “But we must also wake up the French State and the regions.

Europe can help them financially.

The objective is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 55% by 2030. The transport sector is the only one that has not reduced its emissions.

Now we have to act fast.

Time is running out…”


Two-thirds of French people regularly cycle, according to a survey


Energy crisis: Why cycling must be quickly (and massively) developed

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