“Green Deal” initiative officially launched at the Danube Transport Day in European Parliament
Monday, 12 September 2016 09:00Pro Danube officially launched on 7 September 2016 the “Green Deal for Danube Transport” – a private sector initiative to promote sustainable transport on the Danube with an event in the European Parliament.
Together with MEP Ana-Claudia Tapardel (Member TRAN), Pro Danube International organized the “Danube Transport Day” in the European Parliament on 7 September 2016, an event dedicated to the promotion of Danube transportation as vital element of the economic development of the Danube region.
The event brought together representatives from the European Parliament (MEPs Gesine Meissner, Ertug Ismail, Georgi Pirinski), the European Commission (Ms Corina Cretu – Commissioner for Regional Policy and Herald Ruijters – Acting Director DG Move/B), representatives from the Danube States (Mr Ionut Mosteanu – Secretary of State, Ministry of Transport of Romania), high level industry leaders (Mr Max Schulman – Copa-Cocega, Mr Evgeny Tankhilevich – Dunaferr, Mr Michael Viefers – Rhenus SE & CO KG, Antonio Stoean – TTS Group, Wolfgang Lüftner – Danubia Kreuzfahrten GmbH) as well as more than 60 experts and stakeholders with a dedicated interest in the Danube navigation.
“The Danube is one the most important European waterways, with a huge potential for the development of regional industries. In the context of European and global climate changes, the Danube offers a sustainable alternative to traditional road transport. For these reasons, this event aims to highlight the challenges the Danube region is facing and to propose a set of measures to be supported by both the stakeholders and the European institutions. To successfully develop the Danube region, there needs to be a strong connection between the transport priorities and the funds allocated for regional development”, said Ms Tapardel.
As keynote speaker, Commissioner Corina Cretu has sent an important message of support for transforming the Danube into a sustainable core transport axis of the European Union. Addressing an audience consisting of representatives from the European institutions as well as companies and organizations that promote or have commercial activities along the river, Ms Cretu emphasized the need to develop projects aimed at improving the infrastructure and the legislative framework in line with environmental protection. According to Commissioner Cretu: “The Danube is the most international river in the world which gives it a unique character but also presents a challenge in terms of cooperation and coordination of riparian countries. In this context, the Danube Strategy has played a major role in facilitating political decisions important for the region, but also for the realization of infrastructure projects that improve navigability.”
As a vital instrument to facilitate the sustainable development of the Danube waterway and its main navigable tributaries, Pro Danube proposes a “Green Deal for Danube River Transport” to foster a strong cooperation of the public and private sector in order to enhance and to green the Danube river transport.
Extremely appreciated by both the policy makers as well as the industry representatives, the Green Deal will bring tangible results starting with early 2017 as soon as the first foreseen projects will be launched.
Based on daily business examples, the pragmatic dialogue raised the attention of the policy makers with regard to urgent and sustainable improvements of fairway maintenance and infrastructure development, which are responsible to a large extent for the quality and reliability of the Danube logistics services. Environmentally friendly and cost-effective Danube logistics services are essential elements to ensure sustainable development and prosperity in the Danube region. On the long term, both Commissioner Cretu and MEP Tapardel expect that investments are assured at an increasing rate by those directly concerned, whereas the European institutions and national authorities shall support them by creating a more favorable framework.
According to Alexandru Capatu, Chairman of Pro Danube International, “Starting from the need to create synergies between stakeholders, Green Deal proposes measures for a safe Danube infrastructure and for fleets’ modernization, taking into account the environmental protection concerns. At the same time, by involving ports and terminal operators and logistics service providers, activities will also focus on attracting new industries as well as determining existing ones to switch to water transport.”
About Green Deal
The Green Deal for Danube River Transport is a policy initiative developed by Pro Danube to increase the transport volumes on the Danube and to modernize the Danube navigation sector following the environmental and economic challenges ahead. Green Deal proposes good practice examples inspired from innovative models adopted in Western Europe, with dedicated focus on the modernization of the Danube fleet and the reduction of environmental impact. Based on four main pillars, the Green Deal shall facilitate commitments of governments/administrations of the Danube States, of the fleet & barge operators, of the port & terminal operators as well as of industrial users of the Danube waterway together with their logistics service providers.
More information is available here.
About Pro Danube
Pro Danube International (PDI) acts as network of private businesses to promote better infrastructure and services which result in a more intensive use of the environmentally friendly inland waterway. PDI adequately represents the “Danube-minded business” in the political debate on transport policy, transport technology and regional development. The association is a driving force in the development of the Danube as a competitive logistics system that does not compensate or duplicate existing initiatives and other professional associations but integrates and strengthens their activities. PDI acts as a competent partner for authorities and administrations by supporting the definition and implementation of policy actions based on the experiences of the private sector.
More information is available at: www.prodanube.eu