DIONYSUS – Integrating Danube Region into Smart & Sustainable
Multi-modal & Intermodal Transport Chains



DIONYSUS Project – Achievements during the 1st Year of implementation & Plans for the future

DIONYSUS’s Project Partners continue to perform their implementation activities and the project itself successfully completed its foreseen tasks due at the end of the 2nd Reporting Period in line with the provisions of the approved Application Form. Many good things happened since January 2021 until end of June 2021, with the DIONYSUS partnership continuing on the well-established pathway towards a successful project implementation process. Moreover, DIONYSUS was happy to welcome a new project partner – Wieser Consult SRL - committed to take over the tasks and responsibilities initially assigned to Wieser Consult GmbH, who took the decision to withdraw from the Project’s Consortium as of 31 December 2020.

Due to the COVID-19 restrictions all over Europe, the 2nd Set of Project Management Meetings (2nd Consortium Meeting, 2nd Steering Committee Meeting and 2nd Work Package & Activity Leaders Meeting) was successfully organized online, on 26 May 2021 by the  Bulgarian – Romanian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BRCCI). These meetings set the ground to look back, evaluate and analyse the results achieved during the 1st year of activity as well as to discuss the next steps needed to fulfill the Consortium’s commitment to achieve project results that will be beneficial for the entire spectrum of Danube IWT.

Among many other important deliverables, the Report regarding the Transport Infrastructure Status-quo in the Danube Region, the Report on Cargo Transport Flows (Status-quo & Forecast), the Study on Socio-Economic Costs and benefits of Inland Waterway Transport in the Danube Region, the Framework Conditions Analysis and the Concept for Container Liner Services were elaborated and will be further used not only for the elaboration of other Deliverables & Outputs of DIONYSUS, but also by the Danube Region’s stakeholders for deploying their current daily activities and to plan their development in the upcoming years.

Other two achieved Deliverables: the Inventory on Port Digitalization Capabilities in the Danube Region and the Study on Port Pricing Systems will be extremely useful for the further development of Inland Waterway Transport activities, not only in the Danube Region, but also in connection with other EU transport corridors, in order to help the stakeholders to adapt to the challenges raised by the new digital trend and by the current economic and operational framework of IWT activities, strongly affected by the COVID-19 crisis all over the EU.   

Other important milestones such as the launch of the new functionalities of the DPN website, ongoing research activities – the Survey on Port Statistics and COVID-Impact carried out within DIONYSUS as well as important meetings and events where the expected impact of the project were highlighted, are described in detail in the frame of this newsletter.

 The Project’s Consortium is now looking forward to the next major steps which have to be performed within DIONYSUS’s framework: the 2nd Reporting Process, setting the overall conditions to reach the expected results and to elaborate the Deliverables & Outputs planned for the third period: 01.07.2021 – 31.12.2021 and start  the work related to new activities, tasks and challenges, as planned in the Application Form.

Moreover, the DIONYSUS Partnership already started to organise the 3rd Set of Project Management Meetings back-to-back with the First Year Review Meeting, as requested by the regulations of the Danube Transnational Programme. These meetings will be held online, on 16 September 2021. During the First Year Review Meeting, all the works carried out within the framework of DIONYSUS and their progress will be evaluated by the DTP’s Project Officer in accordance with the approved Application Form, in terms of implemented activities, achieved outputs and deliverables, financial spending status, etc.

Based on this review, the DTP Managing Authority / Joint Secretariat will inform the Project’s Partnership about the outcomes and may identify recommendations, including concrete measures and actions which have to be taken during the next months.


DPN brings in a new website as key communication, information, and knowledge-transfer platform

Emphasizing the importance of sharing  information and transferring knowledge to keep the Danube ports at the forefront of global innovation, the extension of the DPN website (www.danubeports.eu) with two key functionalities, namely  – the Port Knowledge Center and the Digital Initiatives Observatory -  represents a vital step forward in reducing the innovation gaps between the ports situated on the Rhine-Danube Corridor while serving the scope & needs of the Dionysus project.

The Port Knowledge Center comprises 4 subsections, namely: Port Statistics, Publications, Events & Coordination Meetings as well as Deliverables & Outputs. The figure below illustrates the Port Knowledge Center structure:

The first section – Port Statistics – collects information on a yearly basis (2020, 2021 & 2022) covering the Danube Region ports which are part of DIONYSUS. These ports will provide via an online survey updated information on the volumes of the main types of cargo transshipped in their ports before and during the COVID-19 crisis. The collected information will feed into the DPN Handbook and the Deliverable dealing with the Impact of COVID-19 on Danube Ports. The first survey was sent out in June and is available here:


The second section – Publications – hosts three different types of publications: capitalisation factsheets, newsletters & the DPN Handbook. These information materials will contribute to a high degree of visibility of DIONYSUS well beyond the border of the Danube Region, facilitating at the same time awareness creation and know-how transfer within the European IWT community.



Survey on Port Statistics & COVID-Impact

Developed within the DIONYSUS project with the support of the Danube Ports Network (DPN), the aim of the "Survey on Port Statistics and COVID-19 Impact" is to collect information on port traffic in the midst of the pandemic covering the year 2020. While Danube shipping is closely correlated with developments in the global and regional economy, the average number of port calls, as well as the amount of the handled products and traffic in passenger transport, could generate useful insights into the actual impact of the COVID-19 crisis on the Danube IWT. The survey furthermore touches upon topics linked to any kind of procedural restrictions that might have impaired a smooth transport flow.

The survey can be accessed under the following link:


Deadline: 15 September 2021



DPN Advisory Board Meeting

Organised online on 27 April, the core objective of the Danube Ports Network (DPN) Advisory Board Meeting was to undertake a thorough review of the activities carried out by the Technical Secretariat in order to determine how it could best support the needs of Danube ports. High on the agenda were the milestones reached since the start of the DIONYSUS project, such as the launch of the new, interactive website with a multitude of updated features. These new functionalities include the Port Knowledge Center and the Digital Initiatives Observatory. Both serve as instruments for knowledge creation and facilitation and are periodically being updated with relevant information.

It was unanimously agreed that the activities of the DPN shall continue in representing the interest of the network and its partners in national and transnational port-related initiatives and projects, emphasizing its importance in keeping Danube ports at the forefront of innovation, thus facilitating their adaptation to the needs and requirements of a modern, future-oriented transport system. Moreover, the DPN will continue to actively support diverse forms of cooperation and partnerships between Danube ports leading to synergies and higher efficiency.


DIONYSUS represented at the Rhine-Danube Corridor Meetings

Pro Danube participated at the 13th Working Group Meeting of the Rhine-Danube Corridor on Ports and Inland Waterways. With Pro Danube being actively involved in the DIONYSUS project, which core objective is to address the main regional challenges in port infrastructure governance and planning in order to facilitate the integration of the Danube Region into smart and sustainable multi-modal transport chains, the meeting proved extremely fruitful from a multitude of perspectives. It provided a platform to discuss and present the ongoing proceedings directly affecting the legislative framework on inland waterway transport, the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the Danube riparian countries, and last but not least, information on the status quo of digitalisation and alternative fuels as well as on the current status of the revision of the TEN-T Regulation.



DIONYSUS project partner the Maritime Ports Administration Constanta continues to successfully promote the development of the Danube inland waterway transport

During the last six months MPAC continued its work on promoting the development of the Danube inland waterway transport, as several milestones have been achieved in this regard.

Following the 1st Workshop on Container Liner Services, which was organized online on 10 December 2020), MPAC initiated and further expanded a Stakeholders Reference Group, with the contribution of all the Dionysus consortium partners.  The group of stakeholders will be periodically updated with key information and achievements related to the overall project activity and will have a key-role as in offering support by providing valuable and realistic feedback.

Three port community representatives meeting were also organized online on 11 March, 2 April and 16 April, having as main purpose the clarification of the details for the realization of the deliverable dealing with Fairway maintenance impact analysis



Annual consultations of the Port Governance Agency

The Dionysus project Port Governance Agency has held the sixth regular annual consultations on April 27 with the groups for ports and harbors and inland shipping of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Serbia. The meeting, which was held online due to the current epidemiological situation, was also attended by representatives of the Ministry of Construction, Transport and Infrastructure, the Danube Commission, the Directorate for Inland Waterways, the Association ,,Serbia Grains’’ and the Association of Gravel, Aggregates and Concrete Producers.

The representatives of the Port Governance Agency pointed out that the previous year was challenging for the business operating on the Danube. According to the Agency’s data, the recorded increase in cargo transshipment by 5 percent at the end of 2020 indicates that IWT has proven to be a flexible and efficient mode of transport even under critical circumstances. Representatives of the groups highlighted that the participants in IWT responded well to the last year’s challenges and that thanks to the joint work of all relevant subjects and institutions, good results have been achieved.



DIONYSUS project partner Port Bulmarket is gradually transforming Ruse into a multimodal logistics hub

The transformation of Ruse into a logistics hub, which combines different modes of transport, becomes more clearly outlined. The city is the biggest port, economic and cultural centre along the Bulgarian part of the Danube. it is located on the crossroad of two European transport corridors 7 and 9. Ruse provides opportunities for cargo transportation with road, railway and water transport, while the proximity of an airport to the city enriches its portfolio.

Project DIONYSUS, in which the Bulgarian-Romanian Chamber and Port Bulmarket are the Bulgarian partners, aims to facilitate the integration of the Danube region into the intelligent and sustainable multimodal transport chains. And in line with the project aims where all consortium partners join forces to do an in-depth research, prepare analyses and reports and make recommendations for eliminating the identified shortcomings and boost developments, the Port of Bulmarket as part of the group „Bulmarket DM“ is gradually realizing its company goals, which will be beneficial to both the city and the entire Danube region.



DIONYSUS – promoted at the International Ukrainian Transport Week 2021 and the Ukrainian Ports Forum

The achievements of the DIONYSUS project were presented by Mr. Vitalii   Lipskyi - Deputy CEO of SE the Ukrainian Sea Ports Authority - at the    International Ukrainian Transport Week 2021, held in Odessa 0n 27-28 May. The Third Annual Ukrainian Ports Forum where USPA is a General Partner, is a key event in the maritime industry of Ukraine.



Managing Authority | Joint Secretariat
Széchenyi István tér 7-8 - 1051 Budapest, Hungary
E-mail: danube@interreg-danube.eu  | Web: www.interreg-danube.eu


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Programme co-funded by European Union funds (ERDF, IPA, ENI)