Angela Merkel paying a visit to Winora, one of the members of ECF’s Cycling Industry Club.
This Wednesday 28 August, German chancellor Angela Merkel officially opened Eurobike, the biggest bicycle trade show in Europe, a first for a German head of government. Addressing the more than 10 000 attendees of the show, Merkel said that Germany is a „cycling nation“. She also said that the more cyclists there are on the streets, the safer they are – a „reason to increase the share of cycling.“
“Angela Merkel attending Eurobike is a big day for cycling advocacy,” said Burkhard Stork, executive director of German ECF member ADFC. “With a German chancellor opening Eurobike, we have shown that we can actually get world leaders to listen to us as a cycling federation.”
After her opening speech, Angela Merkel took a tour of the show in order to get up-to-date about the newest trends in cycling. During her visit of the stands of Winora, Bosch and Specialized, among others, she could confirm the growing trend towards Pedelecs and E-Bikes in Europe and Germany in particular.
“Angela Merkel’s government wants 1 million electric vehicles on German streets until 2020 – but they are already there, only that they are Pedelecs,” said ECF president Manfred Neun.
Mrs Merkel also acknowledged the importance of cycling tourism as a industry and said that her government wants to create favorable political conditions in order to get more people cyling. „We have to make sure the right infrastructure exists so that those who want to switch to the bicycle as a mode of transport can do it,“ the Chancellor said.
Merkel also spoke out against compulsory helmet laws, saying that her government fears they might discourage more people from cycling.
About the European Cyclists’ Federation (ECF)
With over 70 members across nearly 40 countries, the European Cyclists’ Federation (ECF) unites cyclist’ associations from across the globe, giving them a voice on the international level. Our aim is to get more people cycling more often by influencing policy in favour of cycling.
ECF’s members are complemented by networks Scientists for Cycling, Cities for Cycling and the ECF Cycling Industry Club.- See more at: http://www.ecf.com/news/big-day-for-cycling-advocacy-as-angela-merkel-attends-eurobike/#sthash.yjE67tw1.dpuf