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Mobility and Transport

Ana Palacio

Ana Palacio was born in Madrid, Spain on 22 July 1948. Previous assignments 1994-2002: Member of the European Parliament 2002-2004: Minister of Foreign Affairs of Spain 2004-2006: Member of the Spanish Parliament 2006-2008: Senior Vice President...


Ana Palacio was born in Madrid, Spain on 22 July 1948.

Previous assignments

1994-2002: Member of the European Parliament

2002-2004: Minister of Foreign Affairs of Spain

2004-2006: Member of the Spanish Parliament

2006-2008: Senior Vice President and General Counsel of the World Bank Group and Secretary General of the International Center for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID)

2008-2009: Member of the Executive Committee and Senior Vice-President for International Affairs of AREVA

2012-present: Member of the Consejo de Estado del Reino de España (Council of State)

Current tasks

Ana Palacio is an international lawyer and the founding partner of Palacio y Asociados, a law firm with offices in Madrid, Brussels and Washington DC.

Since 2013 Ana Palacio has been a member of the Advisory Group on Foreign Affairs and Security established by the President of the European Union. She is a member of the Article 255 Panel, established by the Treaty of Lisbon, which is responsible for vetting Judges and advocates General for the EU/Luxembourg court system.

Ms. Palacio sits on the Boards of various think tanks and public institutions, including: The Atlantic Council of the United States (2008), the European Council on Foreign Relations (2012), the Institute for Strategic Dialogue (2005), the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council (2008), and Fundación para el Análisis y los Estudios Sociales - FAES (2004).

Ms Palacio has been a distinguished professor at the European Collegio Europeo di Parma (2004-2010) and Senior Fellow and Lecturer in Global Affairs at Yale University (2011-2012). Presently, Ms Palacio is an Adjunct Professor at the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University.

On 12th March 2014 Ms Palacio was appointed European Coordinator for the TEN-T Rhine-Alpine Corridor, a multimodal corridor connecting the North Sea ports of Rotterdam and Antwerp to the Mediterranean basin in Genoa, via Switzerland and some of the major economic centers in the EU.

Contact Ms Ana Palacio here.

Missions 2014

  • Meeting with Dr Grube, CEO Deutsche Bahn AG – 3 September 2014

On 3rd September 2014, the European Coordinators who are leading the Corridors crossing Germany had the opportunity to jointly meet the CEO of Deutsche Bahn to discuss the EU core network policy.

Deutsche Bahn: Dr Grube, Fried, Miram, Sellnick, Lueberrink
European Coordinators: Ana Palacio, Pat Cox, Mathieu Grosch, Carlo Secchi, Karel Vinck

All participants confirmed the importance of this joint meeting. Mr Grube invited the Coordinators to a follow-up meeting with the DB Board before the end of this year.
The following issues were raised by the Coordinators: Germany should make the use of CEF budget more attractive for rail infrastructure managers; lack of private investment; standardisation of equipment to be imposed on suppliers; external dimension TEN-T; need for accompanying measures; financial support for noise protection measures; the need to move from a conversation on design to a conversation on implementation.
Dr Grube stated that in the beginning DB was quite reluctant towards TEN-T. However, this attitude has changed completely. TEN-T offers a chance for leadership to develop a real transport network. DB is an international operator. In this context core network corridors are of the highest priority and instrumental for achieving such international market. Mr Grube also said that he appreciates the open and constructive dialogue.

  • Meetings with Dutch Authorities, 29-30 June 2014

The Dutch authorities organised on 29th and 30th June technical visits and several meetings for the TEN-T Coordinators of Corridors crossing the Dutch territory.
Over the two days, Ms Ana Palacio, Mr Karel Vinck and Mr Péter Balázs met several representatives from the Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment, and from Amsterdam and Rotterdam Port Authorities.
Exchanges took place between the Coordinators and the Dutch decision-makers about the upcoming challenges with the corridors implementations and priorities.
The Port of Amsterdam and Rotterdam infrastructures have been visited including the sea lock of Ijmuiden, which is one of the main maritime bottlenecks for several corridors.
On Monday 30th June a meeting took place with the Dutch Minister of the Infrastructure and the Environment, Ms Mélanie Schultz van Haegen and high-level officials of the Ministry. The fruitful discussions between the Minister and the 3 Coordinators allowed for exchanges of ideas and views about sound implementation and trans-border cooperation between Member States part of the corridors as well as the budgetary and financial perspectives.
An exchange of views about state of play and progress made has been agreed to take place on a regular basis between the Minister and the Coordinators.

  • Technical visit to the Port of Rotterdam, 27 May 2014

Ms Palacio on the invitation of the Port Authorities of Rotterdam paid a technical visit on the 27th May 2014.
The aim of the visit was to have a global overview of the port commercial and technical capabilities.
During the day, beside very fruitful contacts with the port authority's representatives, she had the opportunity to discuss sectorial transport matters with representatives from European Barges Union, Transport and Logistics Netherlands, as well as with the railway freight operator Keyrail (NL).
Ms Palacio had the pleasure to visit the different port basins dedicated to ship maintenance, bulk cargo and container handling.
The port areas of Maasvlakte I and II were also on the agenda of the visit. After a short visit to the MV II information Centre, she had an insight in the different operational parts of the new port area.
The port area tour has been finalised with a visit to the "Caland Bridge", main bottleneck for railway access to the port. Exchanges of views have taken place about the different potential scenarios for the removal of this important bottleneck in the Rhine – Alpine Corridor.

  • Inauguration event of Rail Freight Corridors Rhine-Alpine and North Sea – Mediterranean, Ghent, 20 March 2014

Ms Palacio has been invited to this inauguration event together with Corridor Coordinators Mr Péter Balázs and Mr Karel Vinck to present her views about the state of play of the Rail Freight Corridor 1 (based on the Rhine - Alpine Corridor). It has been attended by several high level Infrastructure Managers and Railway undertakings who had the opportunities to share views and intervene during interesting debates.
The conference has been opened by the Belgian Federal Minister Mr Wathelet and the Dutch Minister Ms Mansveld, who brought their full support to the initiative and the future operational implementation of those two first EU Rail Freight Corridors.
The event was preceded by bilateral meetings between Ms Palacio, MM Balazs and Vinck and Ms Mansveld and Mr Wathelet. The discussions went under a very positive atmosphere with a clear stated willingness to cooperate together with the same objectives.
Ms Mansveld insisted on the priorities linked to ERTMS implementation on the Corridor.
Mr Wathelet provided officially a copy of the Belgian Project Portfolio 2014-2020 for the Belgian railway infrastructure.
Both Ministers highlighted their willingness to help the whole development of the Corridors crossing their countries.