The European Commission published, in the second half of September, a mid-term report on the EU inland waterway action programme - known as NAIADES II - as well as a report on digital inland navigation (DINA).
The NAIADES II progress report highlights that most of the foreseen actions regarding regulations, policy and financing have been successfully achieved. It further identifies on-going actions until 2020 for further implementation of the NAIADES II programme, presented in 2013, which aims at creating the preliminary conditions for inland navigation transport so as to become a quality mode of transport. The report acknowledges the fact that the innovative projects are emerging from local scales with new-built activities, however mainly in the passenger sector. The report specifically focused on the six key areas of intervention:
- Quality infrastructure
- Quality through innovation
- Smooth functioning of the market
- Environmental quality through low emissions
- Skilled workforce and quality jobs
- Integration of inland navigation into the multimodal logistics chain
Following up on the DINA study from October 2017, the report on Digital Inland Navigation sets frame to the discussion on the digitalisation of the inland waterways transport (IWT) sector. Moreover, it seeks synergies, to improve interoperability in logistics and in freight transport across Europe. The identified problems range from the lack of data sharing capabilities to the limited size of the IWT market in comparison to other modes of transport. The research has specified three IWT areas where digitalisation is critically important:
- The improvement of navigation and management of traffic
- The integration with other modes of transport, especially in multimodal
- A reduction of the administrative burden
Proposal on the Electronic freight transport information (includes DANTE project case study)
Partner in multiple projects, the Pro Danube International has given the following comment indirectly: “our concerns start with the very first definitions: ´regulatory information´ and ´eFTI´. Since these are defined very general and the following measures to be taken by the Member States are just to provide the relevant platforms, it still does not solve the problem that authorities can request whatever they want. The only requirement is to be able to prepare / edit / update / submit / receive in electronical communication. It is a step to avoid paper forms, but no requirement for harmonisation. Thus, we can easily end up with similar results like in the field of Research & Innovation System (RIS), meaning that as many Member States - that many interpretations. One main difference is that in RIS the guiding document is a directive, and this proposal is a regulation.” in this document.