|Third Euro-mediterranean Transport Forum|
|Technical meeting (high-officials)|
Brussels, 16 and 17 July 2002
The third meeting of the Euro-Mediterranean Forum of Transport was held in Brussels on 16 and 17 July 2002, at the level of high-officials for transport. The list of participants is attached.
On the occasion of this meeting, the members of the Forum reviewed existing regional cooperation, discussed the guidelines of two new regional MEDA projects — (one relating to navigation by satellite (EGNOS/GALILEO), and the other to maritime safety ("SAFEMED") —, as well as some other specific cooperation topics (ports and short sea shipping, air transport, infrastructure financing).
The meeting also made it possible to take stock of the Working Groups set up following the 2 nd Forum, and to re-examine their organisation and mandates.
This official report appears as a statement of the conclusions of the Forum and does not show the interventions of participants.
A. Status of on-going regional cooperation
The members of the Forum noted the progress of the main on-going projects and programmes, in particular the Euromed Transport Project approved by the Commission in November 2001 (Euro 20 million), the MEDSTAT programme (Med-Trans aspect) and the Inco-med programme (Transport aspect).
The Mediterranean Partners welcomed this progress favourably and called for a strengthening of cooperation.
The GTMO (Group of Ministers for Transport of the Western Mediterranean) informed the members of the Forum of its subregional cooperation activities and reported the conclusions of its last meeting in Madrid (25/06/2002). These conclusions, which refer to the role and to the importance of subregional cooperation initiatives, were welcomed by the members of the Forum. Cyprus in particular specified that these conclusions exceed the framework of the GTMO and have to be understood as encompassing any similar initiative which would emerge for the Eastern Mediterranean.
B. Future MEDA regional projects
The members of the Forum welcomed the guidelines of two new MEDA regional projects: one project dealing with the promotion and application of EGNOS and GALILEO in the Mediterranean (Euromed GNSS Project) and another project concerning maritime safety (SAFEMED project). The preliminary guidelines of these two future projects, which are annexed, will have to be specified and deepened within the framework of the corresponding Working Groups. Once the identification process is concluded, these two projects will be submitted to the MED Committee.
· Euromed GNSS Project
The Tunisian and Egyptian representatives informed the Forum of the interest and readiness of their respective countries to host some of the project's activities and to provide premises for that purpose.
· SAFEMED Project
The Commission informed the members of the Forum on the recent decision of the Council and of the European Parliament (27.06.02) concerning the monitoring of the traffic and the creation of the EMSA (European Maritime Safety Agency). The Community legislative corpus as regards maritime safety is therefore complete, and constitutes the working reference for SAFEMED.
France presented to the Forum the pilot project for the follow-up of the traffic in the Western Mediterranean for which a study has just been launched (traffic study) and entrusted to the CNES (Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales). The results of this study will be presented in a seminar to be held at the end of 2003 in Marseilles. France specified that such a project, once the study is finished, had vocation to be incorporated into MEDA. The Commission specified that the SAFEMED project would take the French proposal into account, as well as the need to involve local resources (strengthening of local capacities) and the EIB if possible.
C. Working Groups of the Forum
It was decided to extend the Working Groups on "Network and Infrastructure", "Navigation by satellite", and "Maritime Transport" (in its two components dealing with "Maritime Safety " on the one hand and "Maritime Policy, ports and short sea shipping" on the other hand), provided an adjustment of their mandate. The mandates of these Working Groups are attached, except for the mandate of the "Network & Infrastructure" group, for which a mandate proposal jointly drawn up by the Commission and the EIB will be transmitted to the Forum in September 2002.
With regard to the "Research and Development" Working Group, this will not be extended in the immediate future, but the Commission specified to the members of the Forum that possibilities of financing for the continuity of this Working Group would be available under the 6th RTD Framework Programme which will start at the beginning of 2003.
Lastly, the setting-up of a new Working Group on air transport was decided, the mandate of which is annexed.
The meetings of these Working Groups will be assumed as soon as possible by the main contract of the Euromed Transport Project, in the framework of the resources available.
D. Next meeting of the Forum
The next Euro-Mediterranean Transport Forum will take place in the last quarter of 2003, most probably in Brussels taking into account the logistical facilities made available by the Commission.
E. Coordinates of the Forum
The Secretariat of the Forum and of its Working Groups is provided by the European Commission.
DG TREN: Mr Patrick Lambert, Head of Unit
Mrs Anne-Charlotte Bournoville
Tel. + 32.2.296.73 04
Fax + 32.2.295.98 16
DG AIDCO: Mr Basile Papadopoulos, Head of Unit
Mr Leonidas Kioussis
Tel. + 32.2.299.28 51
Fax + 32.2.295.56 65
· Address: the European Commission
Bruxelles,09 11 2002