CORTE was first set up in 1997 as an informal group of experts named the “EU Enforcers Group”. The objective of the group was to deal with enforcement of commercial vehicles in collaboration with the European Commission - DG MOVE. From 1997 to 1999, the EU Enforcers Group defined control officers’ needs in road transport social legislation at EU and international level. It dedicated its energy to legislation regulating the implementation and use of tachographs, both analogue and digital, in Europe. From 1999 to 2004, it analysed relevent EU legislation and supported the implementation of the digital tachograph in Europe, through the IDT and MIDT projects. Proposals to amend and improve the EU legislation were issued by the group and served as the basis for the changes in EU road transport social legislation.
In 2004, the EU Member States enforcement authorities decided to transform the informal EU Enforcers Group into an official organisation with the objective to develop more formal activities together with international organisations such as the EU Commission and the United Nations. National authorities requested to enlarge the activities to the whole road transport sector including road safety and road security .
In April 2005, an international association, the Confederation of Organisations in Road Transport Enforcement (CORTE) was set up and registered under Belgian Law with Statutes and a Corporate Governance Charter, a Board of Directors, a CEO, a General Assembly and a Secretariat based in Brussels.
In 2010, due to a continuouly strong increase in CORTE membership and activities, the CORTE Board of Directors decided to organise CORTE activities under three pillars: Road Transport, Road Safety and Road Security.