The Ministerial Conference of the ACROSSEE project (Accessibility improved at border crossings for the integration of South East Europe), entitled “Institutional coordination for overcoming the crisis: investments and horizontal measures to increase the development of the SEE region”, was organised on 12 November 2013 by the Central European Initiative, in cooperation with the Friuli Venezia Giulia Region.

Dedicated to the synergy of the TEN-T network and the Western Balkan transport system for improved efficiency of multi-modal transport networks in the SEE region, the conference was attended by high-level representatives of the Ministries of Transport of Albania, Austria, Croatia, Italy, Romania and Serbia, the European Commission and UNECE together with regional administrations, transport operators and high-level representatives of the private and academic world.

Prospects for relaunching coordination among public administrations and stakeholders were addressed in order to promote the advancement of multi-modal projects along the main transport corridors. The invited guests and speakers stressed the need for soft measures in this field in order to create a transport efficiency, able to overcome the existing economic crisis. In this regard, short-term investments of high European added value, together with the adoption of horizontal measures for facilitating cross-border procedures and improvement of interoperability in the region would be necessary.

The conference was concluded with the signature of a Multi-level Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) among all the ACROSSEE partners, who unanimously agreed on their intentions to strongly enhance their cooperation on promoting measures for the improvement of border-crossings in compliance with the EU regulations.
In this regard, the CEI underlined there was a crucial need for interventions on the main" bottlenecks" of the network in order to revitalise the economy of the area and thus be able to reduce transport time and costs.

The Italian Ministry of Transport pointed out the importance of the ACROSSEE project in this regard, enabling the elaboration, with the other countries of the region, of effective solutions for the transport system in line with the existing realities of the area.

For more information: marconato@cei.int