The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) has launched a consultation into its plans to improve the implementation in the UK of Directive 2003/59/EC which introduced a requirement across the EU for professional drivers to hold a Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC).

Available at, the consultation document is open for comments until 29 April 2020.

In 2013, the European Commission carried out a consultation on how well Directive 2003/59/EC achieved its policy objectives, an exercise to which the DVSA submitted findings.

As a result of the Commission’s investigation, various shortcomings in the Driver CPC process were identified. These included:

  • difficulties relating to, and legal uncertainty in the interpretation of exemptions;

  • the content of the training, which was found to be only partially relevant for drivers’ needs;

  • difficulties for drivers in obtaining mutual recognition of completed or partially completed training undergone in another Member State; and

  • inconsistencies of minimum age requirements between Directive 2003/59/EC and the EU’s VAT Directive (2006/126/EC).

To address these shortcomings, Directive 2003/59/EC was amended by Directive (EU) 2018/645 and these amendments now need to be implemented into UK law.

Primarily this involves introducing new, and modifying existing, exemptions to the requirement to hold a Driver CPC, modifying the subjects that should be covered in training courses and allowing training to be split over two days.

This consultation also seeks views on proposals to issue longer CPC course approvals. These proposed changes are unrelated to those made by Directive 2018/645.

Last reviewed 25 March 2020