Skip to main content
Mobility and Transport

Brian Simpson was born on 6 February 1953 in Leigh, Lancashire, the United Kingdom.

Previous assignments

1974–1989: PE teacher in Liverpool

1981–1986: Councillor, Merseyside County Council

1981–1986: Deputy Chair, Liverpool Airport

1989–1991: Councillor, Committee Warrington Borough Council

1987–1989: Deputy Chair of Finance Committee and Chair of the Policy Review Committee, Warrington Borough Council

1989–2014: Member of the European Parliament, since 2009 Chairman of the EP Committee on Transport and Tourism

1991-2004: Socialist Group Spokesperson for Transport and Tourism

1997–2002: Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Deputy Prime Minister

2004: Member of the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport

July 2014: Mr Simpson became the European Coordinator for the Motorways of the Sea

1 January 2015: awarded the Order of the British Empire by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.


May 2017, Portsmouth, the United Kingdom

  • Visit to the port of Portsmouth and
  • A discussion with Britany Ferries: participation in MoS and EIB programs.

April 2017, Brussels, Belgium

  • Meeting with the European Community Ship-owners Association (ECSA)
  • Meeting with the Maltese Presidency, discussion on the future of MoS.

April 2017, Brussels, Belgium

  • European Coordinator hearing at the European Parliament Transport Committee.

March 2017, Trieste/Koper, Italy/Slovenia

  • Maritime logistic forum: key note speech in Trieste
  • Visit to the port of Koper: discussion about ongoing MoS projects

March 2017, Vilnius, Klaipeda, Lithuania

  • Bilateral meeting with the Minister of Transport, Mr Rokas Masiulis
  • Participation in the kick-off meeting of the Blue Baltics projects.

March 2017, Brussels, Belgium

  • EP closing conference for the Motorways of the Sea project "Atlantis"

February 2017, Brussels, Belgium

  • Meeting and presentations at the occasion of the European Shipping Week

February 2017, Piacenza, Italy

  • Participation in the logistics and maritime forum: European trends and regional perspectives

January 2017, Tel-Aviv, Israel

  • Fresh Food Corridors project:

January 2017, Luxembourg, Luxembourg

  • European Coordinators meeting with the European Investment Bank

January 2017, Brussels, Belgium

  • Participation in the 7th European Sustainable Shipping Forum

November 2016, Bucharest and Constanza, Romania

  • Discussion in the Ministry of Transport about Motorways of the Sea program.
  • Visit to the port of Constanza

October 2016, Brussel, Belgium

  • Meeting of European Coordinator with EU Commissioner for Transport Bulc.

October 2016, Palma de Mallorca, Spain

  • Participation in the seminar on island transport.
  • MoS contribution to the issue of peripherality

October 2016, Venice, Italy

  • Key note speech at the Green Port Congress
  • Discussion with the Venice port of authorities about the ongoing MoS projects implemented by the port of Venice.

September 2016, Burgas, Bulgaria

  • Visit to the port of Burgas together with Coordinator M.Grosch.
  • Discussion about Motorway of the Sea and plans of Burgas for the development of maritime hub with the Black Sea basin.

September 2016, Brussels, Belgium

  • Participation in the Motorways of the Sea workshop for stakeholders. Event co-organised with INEA with the objective to inform and explain the MoS third call for proposal.

Participation in the Almedalen Week, July 2016, Visby, Sweden

  • Maritime policy featured high on the agenda. Mr Brian Simpson participated in the dedicated session on the Motorways of the Sea policy and met with the State Secretary of the Swedish Ministry for Enterprise and Innovation Mr Erik BROMANDER.

Participation in the Almedalen Week, July 2016, Visby, Sweden

The Almedalen Week is an annual Swedish political event in the city of Visby. With speeches, seminars and other political activities, it is considered to be one of the most important forums in Swedish politics. With over 3000 seminars and on average, 20 000 visitors, it has become an important platform for different stakeholders to meet and discuss national and international issues, including maritime affairs and the Swedish role within them.

Panel discussion on the Motorways of the Sea policy

This year the maritime policy featured high on the agenda of the Almedalen Week with a dedicated session on the Motorways of the Sea policy. It gathered numerous Swedish maritime industry stakeholders including ship and port owners, as well as local authorities exposed to maritime issues. Mr Brian Simpson took part in a panel discussion, presenting the EU concept of maritime policy. He focused, in particular, on his recently published Detailed Implementation Plan for the Motorways of the Sea highlighting its major development pillars:

  • Environment
  • Maritime policy integration into logistic chain
  • Sea traffic management
  • Safety and training

The Swedish authorities are very much familiar with the concept of the Motorways of the Sea, with Swedish organisations playing an active role in policy discussions and benefiting significantly from CEF grant funded projects. In the last call alone, 6 out of 12 MoS projects involved Swedish partners. During a debate with port (Gothenburg) and ship owners (Stena) the following points were highlighted:

  • The MoS concept was generally praised but points were raised regarding the need for better interlinking with the Core Network Corridors
  • It is crucial to scale-up from start-up projects (MoS CEF grants) to fully-fledged large investments (scope for more actions through EIB and EFSI)
  • Green shipping has to go together with the level playing field
  • Swedish industry is at the forefront of green shipping; however more funds and incentives are necessary (new vessels and port infrastructure)
  • Sweden can be of help to Mediterranean countries in guiding them through the future SECA application
  • Maritime trade is a global business and therefore global rules should be applied

Meeting with Mr Erik BROMANDER, State Secretary, Swedish Ministry for Enterprise and Innovation

Brian Simpson held a bilateral meeting with the Swedish Secretary of State. The discussion centred on his recent publication of the Motorways of the Sea Detailed Implementation Plan. The meeting confirmed that maritime transport is high on the Swedish Government agenda and that the Government is supportive of the MoS concept. However, the point was also made that there is a real need for more programs favouring innovative technological solutions related to port logistics as well as improving the quality of connections between core ports and hinterland (last mile).