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Hirers create European lobby group

PLANT

A NEW association has been formed to promote the hire industry throughout Europe.

The European Rental Association will foster the development of hire in countries where there is only a fledgling industry and lobby for hire company interests in the European Commission.

The ERA will only represent hire firms, not manufacturers, which, hirers feel, often have a different agenda.

The founder members include pan-European hirers such as access firm Lavendon and hire giant Loxam, whose chief executive, Gerard Deprez, conceived the idea for the ERA.

Mr Deprez called for a body that could work on cross-border rental projects including hammering out common European standards and collating stat ist ics on hire sectors.

National and international representative bodies are being recruited.

Platform association the International Powered Access Federation has signed up, while the Construction Plant-hire Association, which is the biggest rental association in Europe, is considering joining.

Tool hire body Hire Association Europe said it was too early to say what it would do.

HAE's managing director Kevin Minton said: 'To lobby against burdensome regulations is unquestionably a good thing, but we believe that as the HAE there are things that we can do uniquely well ourselves in Europe.'