CEF support to North Sea-Baltic Corridor - May 2020
CEF support to North Sea-Baltic Corridor - April 2018
The North Sea-Baltic corridor is multimodal and connects the Baltic Sea region with the countries of the North Sea region, improving the accessibility of the northern Member States and the connection between the northwest and the northeast of the European Union. The corridor passes through Belgium, the Netherlands, and northern Germany, Poland and then north through the Baltic States. Since its extension in 2021, the whole of Finland and the northern part of Sweden are part of the corridor and a section in Poland up to the border with Ukraine. As since its extension, the North Sea-Baltic Corridor now consists of 8828 km of railways, 6934 km of roads and 2839 km of inland waterways.
The overall objective is to develop and complete a competitive and interoperable trans-European transport network at the highest standards, to connect the regions along the corridor, to accelerate the green transition in the transport sector, and to tap into the economic potential of the region. The main instrument to implement the NSB Corridor objectives are transport infrastructure projects, including roads, railways, and inland waterways. The corridor’s most significant project is Rail Baltica, a European standard gauge railway connecting Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania to Poland.
In July 2022 the European Commission proposed to extend the corridor further, also to Ukraine. The co-legislators, i.e. the European Parliament and the Council, are still working on the proposal.
Main bottlenecks and missing links
One of the most flagrant gaps in the corridor concerns the track gauge. Along the western and central parts of the corridor, the gauge is 1435 mm but in the Baltic states it is 1520 mm and in Finland 1524 mm. Rail Baltica will change close this gap on the NSB Corridor in the Baltic States, but for Finland where no changes to the track gauge are planned.
Following the European agreement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 55% until 2030, and in line with the Sustainable and Smart Mobility Strategy the NSB Corridor should be an accelerator for the green transition. The provision of alternative fuel sources and charging stations is part of this challenge especially considering the need to ensure alternative fuels not only for private cars but also for trucks and trains. In addition, the NSB Corridor need to consider climate change adaptation measures to make the corridor more resilient in the face of extreme weather events.
Considering the high number of urban nodes on the NSB Corridor and their contribution to the corridor’s economic potential one of the priorities is their further development. New comprehensive initiatives for modal shift and multi-modal transport planning are required.
Progress has been made towards the compliance with TEN-T requirements and realising the economic, social, and territorial cohesion potential of the NSB Corridor. Many projects were completed for all transport modes. For instance, twin-port project in Finland and Estonia which improves the traffic between Helsinki West Harbour and Tallinn Old Port; the dredging project in port of Klaipeda (Lithuania); rail and road projects in Poland; several road projects in Germany ensuring safe parking spaces and removing bottlenecks; rail projects in Germany, the construction of the new IJmuiden Sealock and upgrade of Eefde locks in The Netherlands, and road projects in Belgium. The inland waterways on the corridor already meet nearly all requirements for 2030. Overall, there is good progress towards the objectives of the NSB Corridor.
CEF: Pre-identified projects
European Coordinator for the TEN-T North Sea-Baltic Corridor, Ms Catherine Trautmann
Ms Catherine Trautmann was born on 15 January 1951, in Strasbourg, France. She was appointed European Coordinator for the TEN-T North Sea-Baltic Corridor on 29 October 2014. Ms Trautmann studied in Strasbourg, obtaining a Master's degree in Protestant Theology at the Protestant Theology Faculty of the University of Strasbourg. She holds a number of distinctions including:
- Knight of the Legion of Honour
- Officer's Cross of the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany
- Commander of the Order of Arts and Letters
- Honorary Doctorate, University of Leicester
2009-2014: President of the French Socialist Delegation in the European Parliament
1989-1997, 2004-2014: Member of the European Parliament
1997-2000: Minister for Culture and Communication
1989-1997: Mayor of Strasbourg and Chairwoman of the Strasbourg Urban Community
1988-1989: Chairwoman of the National Task Force on Drug Addiction
1988: State Secretary for the Elderly and Disabled
1986-1988: Member of the National Assembly for Bas-Rhin
1983: Member of Strasbourg Municipal Council
Member of Strasbourg Municipal Council (since 1983)
Chair of the Port of Strasbourg (since 2008)
Vice chair of Eurometropole (Since 2008)
Meeting with Lithuanian infrastructure manager and RB Rail in Vilnius, 15 September 2022, Vilnius
The European Coordinator met with the CEO of LTG Infra, Karolis Sankovski, the LTG Infra Rail Baltica team and the Head of Lithuanian RB Rail branch, Marius Normantas, to discuss the development of Rail Baltica in Lithuania.
Meeting with the transport advisors of the Lithuanian president, 15 September 2022, Vilnius
The European Coordinator met with the transport advisors to the President to exchange on the importance of Rail Baltica as a joint project between the Baltic States.
Meeting with the Lithuanian Vice-Minister, 15 September 2022, Vilnius
The European Coordinator and Vice-Minister Loreta Maskaliovienė had an exchange on the TEN-T proposal and Rail Baltica.
Meeting with CEOs of LTG Group, 15 September 2022, Vilnius
The European Coordinator met with CEO of LTG Cargo, LTG Link, and LTG Holding to discuss the current situation on the Baltic rail freight market and the successful operations of LTG Cargo and its participation in the Solidarity Lanes.
Intervention at the Committee of European Affairs of the Parliament, 16 September 2022, Vilnius
The European Coordinator spoke at the Committee of European Affairs of the Lithuanian Parliament on Rail Baltica.
Meeting with RB Rail Supervisory Board chairman, 16 September 2022, Vilnius
The European Coordinator met with RB Rail Supervisory Board chairman, Romas Švedas, to discuss on the Baltic Interconnection Plan.
Meeting with Latvian Prime Minister, 14 September 2022, Riga
The European Coordinator met with the Prime Minister of Latvia, Krišjānis Kariņš, to exchange on Rail Baltica which both agreed is of utmost importance for the Baltic States.
Meeting with Latvian Minister of Transport, 14 September 2022, Riga
The European Coordinator met with the Latvian Minister of Transport, Tālis Linkaits, to discuss Rail Baltica and the need to exploit the Baltic 1520 network with the other Baltic states to develop a north-south connection through the Baltic states.
Meeting with SJSC Latvian Railways management board, 14 September 2022, Riga
The European Coordinator met with the representatives of the board of Latvian Railways to discuss the situation of the freight market and the role of the Amber Train to prepare the market for Rail Baltica.
Meeting with Members of the Latvian Parliament, 14 September 2022, Riga
The European Coordinator met with MPs Jānis Vucāns, Atis Lejiņš and Reinis Znotiņš to discuss Rail Baltica and its increased significance following the Russian attack on Ukraine.
Meeting with Latvian Ministry of Finance, 14 September 2022, Riga
The European Coordinator met with the transport advisor of the finance minister to exchange on the geopolitical importance of Rail Baltica and the role of the Connecting Europe Facility in its development.
Meeting Rail Baltica Management Board and Supervisory Board, 14 September 2022, Riga
The European Coordinator met with members of the RB Rail Management Board and Supervisory Board to discuss Rail Baltica in Latvia. The Coordinator also had the opportunity to meet with RB Rail As employees and thank them for they hard work to connect the Baltics to the rest of the EU.
Meeting with Minister of Economic Affairs and Infrastructure, 13 September 2022, Tallinn
The European Coordinator met the new Estonian Minister of Economic Affairs and Infrastructure, Riina Sikkut, to discuss the political priorities of the NSB corridor and the important role of Rail Baltica in the new geopolitical context. Witnessing the official launch of the Amber Train, the importance of developing north-south rail freight was also discussed.
The first departure of the ‘Amber Train’, 13 September 2022, Tallinn
Together with Minister Riina Sikkut, the European Coordinator to witnessed the first departure of the ‘Amber Train’. The Coordinator answered to Estonian media and congratulated the Baltic States for this achievement, expressing the hope that it will become a regular service to connect the Baltics.
Meeting with Rail Baltic Estonia, 13 September 2022, Tallinn
The European Coordinator met with the Rail Baltic Estonia CEO, Anvar Salomets, and his team to discuss the development of the Rail Baltic Estonia.
Meeting with railway stakeholders, 13 September 2022, Tallinn
The European Coordinator met with the director general of Eesti Raudtee (Kaido Zimmermann), the Port of Tallinn CEO (Valdo Kalm), the CEO of HHLA TK Estonia (Raul Toomsalu) and the chairman of the board of of Operail (Raul Toomsalu). They discussed the current situation of the freight market in the Baltic States, the potential of intra-Baltic transport on rail and the role of the Solidarity Lanes initiative.
Meeting with Members of the Estonian Parliament, 13 September 2022, Tallinn
The European Coordinator met with MPs Annely Akkermann and Andres Metsoja, and discussed the Rail Baltica, the north-south railway connections and the added value of a well-developed trans-European transport network for Estonia.
Meeting with new head of the Commission representation, 12 September 2022, Helsinki
The European Coordinator met the new head of the Commission representation, Maria Blässar, to exchange on the NSB corridor and the latest developments in Finland.
Meeting with VR, 12 September 2022, Helsinki
The European Coordinator met Elisa Markula, the new CEO of VR to discuss about the NSB corridor and the challenges for freight transport in Finland and the Baltic region following Russia’s attack against Ukraine.
Meeting with Minister of Transport of Finland, 12 September 2022, Helsinki
The European Coordinator met the Finnish Minister of Transport, Timo Harakka, to exchange on the impact of the Russian war against Ukraine, the added value of a well-developed trans-European transport networks, and political priorities.
Meeting with CEO of Suomirata, 12 September 2022, Helsinki
The European Coordinator met the CEO and planning director of Suomirata, Timo Kohtamäki, to learn more about the plans of Suomirata, exchange on the role of the NSB corridor and discuss the transport modelling approach of Suomirata.
Meeting with New Energy Coalition, 31 August 2022, Brussels
The European Coordinator met the director for hydrogen, Patrick Cnubben, to discuss alternative fuels.
Meeting with RB Rail Management Board and Commission, 31 August 2022, Brussels
The European Coordinator met the RB Rail management board in Brussels to discuss Rail Baltica together with the European Commission.
Connecting Europe Days, Coordinators’ Seminar, 30 June 2022, Lyon
The European Coordinator participated in a seminar with her fellow coordinator as a follow up of the Connecting Europe Days.
Connecting Europe Days, speech during official conference programme, 29 June 2022, Lyon
The European Coordinator gave a speech on increased synergies between energy and transport as part of the official conference programme.
Connecting Europe Days, signature of the high level understanding on the indicative TEN-T network of Ukraine, 29 June 2022, Lyon
The European Coordinator attended the signing ceremony of the high-level understanding between Ukraine and the Commission on the indicative TEN-T network for Ukraine. For the Commission the understanding was signed by the Commissioner for transport, Adina Vălean, for Ukraine by the minister of infrastructure Mr Oleksandr Kubrakov.
Connecting Europe Days, exchange with RB Rail Management Board, 29 June 2022, Lyon
The European Coordinator had an exchange with the management board of RB Rail for a detailed overview of the current state of the project.
Connecting Europe Days, exchange with Senator Tjarks from Hamburg, 29 June 2022, Lyon
The European Coordinator met with Senator Tjarks from Hamburg in charge of mobility to discuss the cooperation regarding the objectives of the North Sea – Baltic corridor.
Connecting Europe Days, meeting with Guido Beermann (Brandenburg), Ossi Savolainen (Helsinki-Uusimaa), and Bert Boermans (Province Overijssel), 29 June 2022, Lyon
The European Coordinator met with high-level representatives of the regions Brandenburg, Helsinki-Uusimaa, and Overijssel to discuss possibilities for further cooperation along the North Sea – Baltic corridor.
Connecting Europe Days, meeting with the Polish transport minister and high level representatives of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, 29 June, Lyon
The European Coordinator Catherine Trautmann and her fellow coordinator Matthias Ruete met with the Polish minister of transport, Mr Adamczyk, and high level representatives from the Baltic states to discuss Rail Baltica and the rail freight in the Baltic region.
Connecting Europe Days, event with heads of the transport administrations, 28 June 2022, Lyon
The European Coordinator participated in an event with the heads of the European transport administrations and had a side meeting with the director general in charge for mobility of the Dutch ministry for infrastructure and waterways. Topics discussed included alternative fuels and international passenger rail.
Connecting Europe Days, meeting with the CEO of the Lithuanian infrastructure manager LTGI, 28 June 2022, Lyon
The coordinator met the Karolis Senkovski, the CEO of the Lithuanian infrastructure manager, to discuss Rail Baltica.
Connecting Europe Days, Corridor Meeting, 28 June 2022, Lyon
The European Coordinator chaired a meeting of the North Sea – Baltic corridor which was open to all interested parties to present the progress of the implementation of the corridor and her ideas for the 5th Work Plan.
Connecting Europe Days, meeting with Zuid Holland, 28 June 2022, Lyon
The European Coordinator met the regional minister of South Holland, Jeannette Baljeu, together with fellow coordinator Professor Paweł Wojciechowski to discuss synergies between the Rhine Alpine and the North Sea – Baltic corridors and developments towards zero-emission mobility.
Meeting between European Coordinators Catherine Trautmann and Matthias Ruete, 27 June 2022
The European Coordinators exchanged on the role out of ERTMS and activities to support rail freight transport and rail interoperability in particular in the Baltic region.
European Coordinators’ Seminar, 17 May 2022
The European Coordinator took part in an online seminar with her fellow coordinators. Topics discussed include the Russian war of aggression against Ukraine and the Connecting Europe Days 22 which will take place in Lyon.
Corridor Working Group in Bremen, 3 and 4 May 2022, Bremen
The European Coordinator chaired the corridor working group in Bremen together with fellow coordinator Professor Kurt Bodewig. Key topics of the corridor working group included hinterland connections of ports, the role of ports in the energy transition and digitalisation. The meetings took place in Bremerhaven and Bremen.
Meeting with the region Grande-Est, 26 April 2022, Brussels
The European Coordinator met representatives of the French Grande-Est region in Brussels. Topics of the meeting included the TEN-T revision and the North Sea – Baltic corridor.
Meeting with Lithuanian Vice-Minister for Transport, 26 April 2022, Brussels
The European Coordinator met the Lithuanian vice-minister for transport. Topics discussed included Rail Baltica and rail freight in the Baltic states.
Friends of Rail Baltica, 26 April 2022, Brussels
The European Coordinator spoke at the Friends of Rail Baltica group of the European Parliament, chaired by the Member of the European Parliament, Mr Roberts Zile. The group brings together MEPs who are interested in Rail Baltica. The April meeting focused on the impacts of Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine.
Rail Baltica procurement webinar, 13 April 2022
The European Coordinator spoke at the Rail Baltica procurement webinar which provided an overview of the planned procurement activities to interested parties. The Coordinator presented the European perspective on the project.
Launch of the new accessibility data base, 8 April 2022
The European Coordinator opened the online event organised by the European Disability Forum to launch its new accessibility data base which was funded by the donation of the prize money that the European Coordinator received with the European Railway Award.
Rail Baltica Special Task Force, 28 March 2022
Following Russia’s attack on Ukraine, the European Coordinator called a special Rail Baltica Task Force with high level representatives of Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland. The meeting took place online.
BSR Access Final Conference, 16 March 2022
The European Coordinator spoke at the final conference of the BSR Access project. Her intervention and moderation focused on the rollout of alternative fuels along the corridor and the main findings of BSR Access.
The revision of the TEN-T Regulation: information session for the CNC Forum stakeholder, 15 March 2022
The European Coordinator spoke at the online event to explain the revision of the TEN-T regulation to the stakeholders of the core network forums. Her intervention focused on the role of alternative fuels and the role of the corridors in the green transition.
Video message for the CEF conference "Instrument "Łącząc Europę"", 1 December 2021, online
The European Coordinator contributed with an online video message to a conference on the Connecting Europe Facility organised by the Polish Ministry of Development Funds and Regional Policy. In her message, the coordinator underlined the importance of CEF to help achieve the objectives of the North Sea-Baltic corridor.
Rail Baltica Industry Day, 25 November 2021, online
The European Coordinator participated in the very successful Rail Baltica Industry Day which replaced the Rail Baltica Global Forum this year due to the pandemic. The coordinator moderated to two panel discussions on the project’s progress and on the potential of an economic corridor along Rail Baltica.
North Sea Baltic corridor forum, 22 November 2021, online
The European Coordinator chaired the corridor forum. The forum provided an opportunity for exchange among its members and the main focus lay on the preparation of the work plan.
North Sea Baltic corridor working group, 22 November 2021, online
The European Coordinator chaired the corridor working group of the North Sea Baltic Corridor. The focus topics of the working group were the European Year of Rail and rail freight.
Exchange with Kadri Simson, Commissioner for Energy, 8 November 2021, online
The European Coordinator and the Commissioner for Energy, Kadri Simson, discussed required synergies between energy and transport policy for the green transition of the transport sector, in particular for the North Sea Baltic corridor.
Rail Baltica Political Task Force, 27 October 2021, online
The European Coordinator co-chaired the Task Force during which the progress of the project was reviewed and it was agreed to prioritise the mainline to ensure swift progress.
Meeting with the Committee of Regions, 26 October 2021, Brussels
As part of her wish to reach out to regions, the European Coordinator met with director Thomas Wobben of the Committee of Regions. Possible ways of cooperation were discussed as well as ways to jointly work towards the decarbonisation of transport along the North Sea Baltic corridor.
Meeting with Guido Beermann, minister for infrastructure and spatial planning of the State of Brandenburg, 26 October 2021, Brussels
The European Coordinator and director Herald Ruijters of DG MOVE met minister Guido Beermann and members of Brandenburg’s cabinet. Topics discussed included the Fit for 55 package, the upcoming TEN-T revision and the role of the North Sea-Baltic corridor in the green transition.
Meeting with Georges Gilkinet, federal Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Mobility of Belgium, 26 October 2021, Brussels
The European Coordinator and the minister exchanged views on the North Sea-Baltic corridor and ways to ensure that the corridor can become an accelerator for the green transition in the transport sector. A closer link with the energy sector and the importance of rail in this context were discussed.
CINEA event “The Connecting Europe Facility support for railways”, 14 October 2021, online
The European Coordinator participated in a panel of a CINEA event on the Connecting Europe Facility and railways. Her intervention focused on lessons learnt from the North Sea-Baltic core network corridor and Rail Baltica.
Connecting Europe Express journey from Brussels to Luxembourg, Strasbourg, and Paris, 5 to 7 October 2021
The European Coordinator joint the Connecting Europe Express on its journey from Brussels to Luxembourg, Strasbourg and Paris. The Coordinator took part in the freight conference in Bettembourg, a seminar of the coordinators in Strasbourg and the reception following the arrival of the Connecting Europe Express in Paris.
Exchange with Interessensgemeinschaft Ostbahn, 30 September 2021, online
The European Coordinator met with representatives of the Interessensgemeinschaft Ostbahn and representatives of the districts along the line. The representatives presented their plans for the Ostbahn and underlined its importance for cross-border traffic in the region.
Connecting Europe Express Baltic train, 21 to 22 September 2021, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania
On 21 and 22 September, the European Coordinator travelled on the Connecting Europe Express from Tallinn to Vilnius and Kaunas. During the journey, the Coordinator had exchanges with the transport ministers of the three Baltic states, and high-level representatives of the rail sector in the region. Rail Baltica was at the focus of most discussions.
Exchange with of representatives of the province of Overijssel, 26 August 2021, online
The European Coordinator met representatives of the province of Overijssel and the city of Hengelo. Cooperation opportunities among the partners involved in the corridor were discussed.
Exchange with the Member of the European Parliament Mr Jens Gieseke, 1 July 2021, online
The European Coordinator and the Mr Jens Gieseke discussed cross border railway traffic in and around the Western end of the corridor.
Visit at the transport committee of the European Parliament, 28 June 2021, online
The European Coordinator attended online a session of the transport committee of the European Parliament. The Coordinator presented the current status of the North Sea Baltic Corridor and answered questions of Members of the European Parliament.
ERTMS Workshop “ERTMS for Rail Baltica: Ensuring implementation and interoperability”, 28 June 2021, online
Together with the European Coordinator for ERTMS, the Coordinator for the North Sea Baltic corridor held an online workshop on ERTMS on the Rail Baltica line from Tallinn to Warsaw. Experts from Poland, Finland, the Baltic states, RB Rail, the European Agency for Railways and the Commission discussed ERTMS deployment.
BSR Access Clean Fuel Agora, videoconference 9 June 2021
The European Coordinator gave one of the key note speeches and participated in the panel discussion during the Clean Fuels Agora. This online seminar looked at the role of the North Sea Baltic corridor in advancing the rollout of clean fuels in the Baltic Sea region and creating an interoperable clean fuel system along the core corridors of the Trans-European Transport Network (TEN-T).
Friends of Rail Baltica in the European Parliament, videoconference 8 June 2021
The European Coordinator took part in the Friends of Rail Baltica meeting organised by the chair of the group, the MEP Roberts Zīle. The meeting provided an opportunity to inform the participating MEPs about the progress that Rail Baltica made since the last meeting.
Seminar of the European Coordinators, videoconference 1 June 2021
The European Coordinators hold an online seminar on the TEN-T revision. The focus of the discussion were the Motorways of the Sea and inland waterways.
Meeting with the Finnish Minister of Transport, videoconference 21 May 2021
On 21 May 2021, the European Coordinator for the North Sea Baltic corridor and the Coordinator for the Scandinavian Mediterranean Corridor met the Finnish Minister of Transport, Mr Timo Harakka. A variety of subjects were discussed, including the extension of the North Sea Baltic corridor and the new Finnish 12 year transport plan.
Seminar of the European Coordinators, videoconference 11 May 2021
Together with her colleagues, the European Coordinator for the North Sea Baltic corridor took part in an online seminar on the TEN-T revision. The focus lay on alternative fuels and intelligent transport systems.
Motorways of the Sea Forum, Joint Working Group on Ports, 23 April 2021
The European Coordinator took part in the joint working group on ports which was held as part of a wider workshop organised by the European Coordinators for the Motorways of the Sea and the Atlantic and North Sea-Mediterranean corridors. The workshop focused on hinterland connections as well as the greening and the digitalisation of ports and of maritime transport. The European Coordinator for the North Sea-Baltic corridor concluded the event, highlighting the main findings and their relevance for the upcoming TEN-T revision.
Seminar of the European Coordinators, videoconference 20 April 2021
The European Coordinators held an online seminar in the context of the upcoming TEN-T revision. The focus lay on the rail, the European Railway Traffic Management System (ERTMS), and key performance indicators for road transport.
Seminar of the European Coordinators, videoconference 13 April 2021
The European Coordinators held an online seminar to discuss the external dimension of TEN-T policy with a view to the upcoming revision of the TEN-T guidelines.
RailTech Live, 30 March 2021
The European Coordinator spoke at RailTech Live on how TEN-T policy can help boost modal shift as part of the European Green Deal ambition to reduce transport emissions by 90% by 2050. She focussed her intervention on the upcoming revision of the TEN-T Regulation and in particular the enabling factors for multimodality and the merging of the Core Network Corridors with the Rail Freight Corridors as announced in the Sustainable and Smart Mobility Strategy of December 2020.
NSB Corridor Working Group on Interoperability – Alternative Fuel Infrastructure, with a focus on Hydrogen, 29 March 2021
The working group meeting served to exchange best practices for the deployment of hydrogen technologies in different transport modes, with several examples from different locations along the NSB Corridor. Information on the available EU sources of financial support was also provided to the ca 65 participants of the online meeting.
15th Corridor Forum, 26 March 2021
The first Corridor Forum after the adoption of the 4th NSB Work Plan took place on 26 March in an online setup. This allowed the participation of ca. 95 Corridor Forum members and observers of the new parts of the Corridor in line with the upcoming extension of the Corridor upon final adoption of the new CEF Regulation. The Corridor study consortium presented the latest Corridor study update, including an analysis of the extensions. DG CONNECT presented policy developments related to 5G Corridors. The progress of key projects on the Corridor was also presented by the relevant institutions: Rail Baltica in the Baltic States and Poland and the new sea lock in Ijmuiden at the entrance of the port of Amsterdam.
Rail Baltica Task Force, 23 March 2021
The Rail Baltica Task Force discussed the progress and further implementation of Rail Baltica in the Baltic States and Poland and ways to further deepen the cooperation to ensure full interoperability of the line. The progress of the ongoing discussions to define the future infrastructure management model was also presented.
Seminar of the European Coordinators, videoconference 19 March 2021
In this seminar, the European Coordinators exchanged views on the role of urban nodes in the TEN-T, and supported to define the list of urban nodes and the criteria applying to them in a clearer way in the revised TEN-T Regulation.
Open lecture at Hochschule Osnabrück, 11 March 2021
The European Coordinator exchange with students and interested parties from Osnabrück on the ambitions of the European Green Deal and the implications for the transport sector. She also provided examples of infrastructure developments in the different transport modes on the NSB Corridor.
GI Hub Webinar on cross-border projects, 10 March 2021
Upon invitation of the think tank “GI Hub”, Ms Trautmann reported on her role as European Coordinator and the factors for a successful cross-border project governance. The recording of the event is available here.
Seminar of the European Coordinators, videoconference 9 March 2021
The European Coordinators exchanged in this seminar on the governance aspects of the TEN-T Regulation and its revision. While overall successful and still relevant, they saw some areas for improvement to strengthen the role of the European Coordinators even further.
Seminar of the European Coordinators, videoconference 2 February 2021
This seminar of the European Coordinators was the first in a series dedicated to the revision of the TEN-T Regulation. The Coordinators exchanged general views about the main elements of the revision as well as the role of the Coordinators, linked also to the Sustainable and Smart Mobility Strategy.
Meeting with the Management Board of RB Rail AS, 27 January 2021
The European Coordinator held an exchange of views with the members of the Management Board of RB Rail AS, the Joint Venture in charge of coordinating the implementation of the Rail Baltica project in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.
Meeting with Lanfer Logistik, 13 January 2021
The European Coordinator met with representatives of Lanfer Logistik to learn about a planned project to foster intermodal transport in the chemical sector.
Meeting with Marius Skuodis, Minister for Transport and Communications of Lithuania, 22 December 2020
Following the change of government in Lithuania, the European Coordinator held a first exchange of views with the new Minister of Transport and Communications, Mr Marius Skuodis. The Minister outlined his priorities for the development of sustainable transport and confirmed his full commitment to the implementation of the Rail Baltica project.
Baltic Sea Basin event on Motorways of the Sea and port-hinterland connections, 1 December 2020
Upon the initiative of the MoS Coordinator Kurt Bodewig, a 2.5 hour webinar was jointly organized with the three CNC Coordinators (Pat Cox (SCM), Catherine Trautmann (NSB) and Anne Jensen (BAC)) for the Baltic sea basin. The event titled “Motorways of the Sea in the Baltic Sea: priorities and needs for a sustainable & effective multimodal transport” and involved over 140 participants. Various good practices in the field of digital multimodal transport solutions as well as alternative fuels deployment in ports were presented.
European Coordinators’ virtual seminar, 25 November 2020
The Coordinators’ seminar on 25 November 2020 was dedicated to a discussion on the review and revision of the TEN-T Regulation and on the Recovery & Resilience Facility, with participation of colleagues from the Commission’s dedicated Task Force.
Joint Working Group of the NSB and ScanMed Corridors on the Corridor extensions, 24 November 2020
The European Coordinators Pat Cox and Catherine Trautmann held a joint working group meeting with the stakeholder organisations that will join the ScanMed and NSB Corridor Fora after entry into force of the new CEF Regulation, which entails a number of Corridor extensions. The stakeholders were briefed about the content and workflow of the Corridor studies and had the opportunity to present their priorities in the Corridor context.
Meeting with Mārtiņš Staķis, Mayor of Riga, 17 November 2020
The European Coordinator and the Mayor of Riga discussed development priorities for sustainable transport in the Latvian capital and the opportunities linked to Rail Baltica and EU investment programmes. The Mayor confirmed his strong commitment to fighting climate change and his will to cooperate at the European level. Catherine Trautmann highlighted the articulation of long-distance and local transport in hubs like Riga as a key success factor of Rail Baltica.
Meeting with Ahti Kuningas, Dins Merirands and Gytis Mazeika, 30 October 2020
The Vice-Ministers/State Secretaries of the Estonian, Latvian and Lithuanian Ministries of Transport and the European Coordinator exchanged views on improvements to the Rail Baltica project delivery structure in a videoconference on 30 October 2020.
European Coordinators’ virtual seminar, 19 October, 2020
The Coordinators’ seminar on 19 October 2020 focussed on the latest state of play with regard to Next Generation EU and in particular the Recovery & Resilience Facility and a discussion on how the instrument could be used in the context of the implementation of the TEN-T network.
Supervisory Board of RB Rail AS, 14 October 2020
The European Coordinator participated in the meeting of RB Rail’s Supervisory Board of 14 October 2020 in her capacity as observer. The topics on the agenda included corporate governance, project governance, financing, as well as implementation and procurement strategies.
European Coordinators’ virtual seminar, 22 September 2020
The main focus of the Coordinators’ seminar on 22 September 2020 was on rail-related matters. Former European Coordinator for ERTMS Karel Vinck and former Ambassador of Belgium Jan Grauls presented the initiative "Europalia - European Year of Rail 2021", which foresees a series of events, campaigns and initiatives that will promote rail as a sustainable, innovative and safe mode of transport. Elisabeth Werner, Director for Land Transport at DG MOVE provided an overview of the Commission’s rail policy and the upcoming initiatives, including the revision of the Rail Freight Corridors Regulation. The Coordinators discussed relevant related projects on their Corridors and how to best support the European Year of Rail from their side.
Meeting with Member State representatives of the Corridor Forum on impacts and recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic, 17 September 2020
On 17 September 2020, the European Coordinator invited the Member State representatives of the Corridor Forum to exchange information on the preliminary impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic on the implementation of the NSB Corridor projects, as well as on the opportunities linked to national and EU recovery plans.
NSB Rail Freight Corridor Executive Board and Management Board meeting, 15 September 2020
Following the adoption of the 4th edition of the NSB Core Network Corridor Work Plan, the European Coordinator presented its content to the Executive Board and Management Board of the NSB Rail Freight Corridor. During the exchange of views which followed, operation of 740m long trains was confirmed as a key for efficient international rail freight services on the Corridor and a priority for further joint action.
Rail Baltica Task Force, 9 September 2020
The European Coordinator chaired an online meeting of the Rail Baltica Task Force with participants from Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland. The topics discussed included the progress of Rail Baltica implementation, impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic, further implementation plans and related financing schemes.
Virtual Seminar of the European Coordinators, 18 June 2020
The European Coordinators held an exchange of views with Commissioner for Transport Adina Vălean on priorities in relation to transport infrastructure investments and further development of the TEN-T Corridors. They also discussed the EU’s economic recovery and long-term budget plans and their implications for transport.
Online meeting with the Friends of Rail Baltica in the European Parliament, 16 June 2020
Due to the ongoing restrictions resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic, the chair of the group of Friends of Rail Baltica in the European Parliament decided to organise the meeting in an online format. The Joint Venture RB Rail and the State Secretaries / Vice-Ministers for Transport of Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland informed the participants about the Rail Baltica implementation progress. Estonia and Latvia confirmed their decision to integrate their national Implementing Bodies within RB Rail. Future financing of the project was also discussed, in the context of the ongoing negotiations on the next EU long-term budget.
Virtual Seminar of the European Coordinators, 18 May 2020
During their online meeting, the European Coordinators discussed developments in relation to Chinese investments in transport infrastructure in Europe, as well as the role of transport and EU investment instruments in the aftermath of the Covid-19 crisis.
Online meeting with the Baltic State Secretaries for Transport, 6 May 2020
This meeting was part of the discussions on a more streamlined and integrated governance model for the implementation of the Rail Baltica project. The European Coordinator underlined the arguments in favour of certain changes and tried to facilitate an agreement between the representatives of the Baltic States.
Meeting of the Rail Baltica Task Force, 20 February 2020, Brussels
The Rail Baltica Task Force, comprising representatives of Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Finland and the Commission, discussed the state of implementation of the Rail Baltica project in the respective countries, measures to reinforce the cooperation and accelerate implementation, as well as plans for regional stops along the international railway. It was decided to intensify the cooperation between the Baltic States and Poland in view of ensuring full interoperability of the new railway line to be constructed on the cross-border section between Ełk (Poland) and Kaunas (Lithuania).
Hearing in the European Parliament’s Committee for Transport and Tourism, 20 February 2020, Brussels
At her regular hearing in the TRAN Committee, the Coordiantor informed the Members of the European Parliament on the priorities and achievements for the NSB Corridor’s implementation, the upcoming Corridor extension and how Corridors function as enablers of smart and sustainable mobility. Her presentation is available here.
Meeting with Lydia Peeters, Minister for Mobility and Public Works of Flanders, 20 February 2020, Brussels
The European Coordinator exchanged with Minister Peeters on the Flemish government’s priorities in the area of transport, in particular with regards to railways, inland waterways and clean urban transport. Minister Peeters informed the European Coordinator on the state of play of the 3RX (“Iron Rhine”) project and enquired about the upcoming TEN-T review and the future mobility and transport strategy at the EU level.
Meeting with the Baltic Prime Ministers and Ministers of Transport of the Baltic States and Poland, 6 December 2019, Riga
Upon invitation of the Latvian Prime Minister, the European Coordinator participated along with the Director general of DG MOVE, Henrik Hololei, in the meeting of the Baltic Council of Ministers with a dedicated session on Rail Baltica. The Prime Ministers adopted a Joint Declaration expressing their full support to the coherent and timely implementation of Rail Baltica.
Friends of Rail Baltica in the European Parliament, 26 November 2019, Strasbourg
Upon invitation of MEP Roberts Zile, the Friends of Rail Baltica gathered for the first time again after the European elections of May 2019. The meeting took place in the European Parliament in Strasbourg and allowed the newly elected or reelected Members to exchange information on the progress of Rail Baltica with Coordinator Trautmann, representatives of the Baltic States and the management of RB Rail.
14th Corridor Forum, 20 November 2019, Brussels
The last meeting before the preparation of the 4th edition of the NSB Corridor Work Plan served to consult the members of the Corridor Forum on the latest results of the Corridor study. The latest developments of the NSB Rail Freight Corridor and within the Rail Baltica project were also presented and discussed. DG MOVE also presented the funding opportunities under the CEF 2019 MAP Call and the CEF Blending Facility.
Corridor Working Group on EU-Asia connectivity, 30-31 October 2019, Duisburg
The Working Group focussed on the topic of the interoperability on the NSB Corridor and how to accommodate the growing rail traffic to and from Asia. It included a site visit of the port of Duisburg.
Meeting with the Finnish Minister Sanna Marin, Digital Transport Days and meeting with the CPMR Baltic Sea Commission, 7 to 9 October 2019, Helsinki
Coordinator Trautmann met the new Finnish Minister for Transport, Sanna Marin, on 7 October 2019 in Helsinki, together with the European Coordinator for ERTMS Matthias Ruete. The importance of the Rail Baltica project for Finland as well as the national plans for investment in rail projects and digitalisation of rail were discussed. The European Coordinator then participated in the Digital Transport Days conference and spoke in the sessions on digitalisation and decarbonisation, as well as the closing plenary. An informal meeting on ITS along the NSB Corridor was held with various Corridor stakeholders in the margins of the conference. On 9 October, the European Coordinator participated in a meeting of the CPMR Baltic Sea Commission, discussing regional approaches and views on the review of the TEN-T guidelines.
Meeting with the Latvian Minister Talis Linkaits and conference for the 100th anniversary of Latvian Railways, 12 September 2019, Riga
The European Coordinator met with the Latvian Minister of Transport, Talis Linkaits, to discuss the progress of the Rail Baltica project, and gave a keynote speech at the conference celebrating the 100th anniversary of Latvian Railways.
Meeting with the Estonian Minister Taavi Aas and Rail Baltica Task Force, 11 September 2019, Tallinn
On 11 September 2019, the European Coordinator met with the Estonian Minister of Economic Affairs and Communications, Taavi Aas, to discuss the progress of the Rail Baltica project. She also chaired the meeting of the Rail Baltica Task Force, including representatives of the Ministries and project implementing bodies of the Baltic States and Poland, as well as the Finnish Ministry of Transport and Communications. Besides the state of play of project implementation, the model for the future management of the infrastructure and the ongoing national and European audits were also discussed.
Supervisory Board of RB Rail, 16 July 2019, Brussels
The European Coordinator participated as observer in the meeting of the Supervisory Board of RB Rail, which also held an exchange of views with DG MOVE’s Director General Henrik Hololei.
13th NSB Corridor Forum, 14 June 2019
The 13th NSB Corridor Forum agenda included an update on the progress of the Corridor study, going through the past and upcoming events, a presentation of the joint strategy development between the Netherlands, Flanders and North Rhine Westphalia, a focus on the new European financing opportunities with the CEF blending facility and the next CEF Regulation, and a presentation of the Inland Waterways Transport platform.
Meeting with the State Secretaries of the German Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure, CEO of Deutsche Bahn and Ministers of Brandenburg and Berlin, 29 May 2019, Berlin
The Orient East Med – Rhine Alpine – North Sea Baltic – Rhine Danube – ScanMed - Atlantic TEN-T Coordinators and the ERTMS Coordinator met the German Federal State Secretary Guido Beermann, the State Secretary Michael Güntner and the Parliamentary State Secretary Steffen Bilger. This meeting allowed for exchanges of information on essential issues for each of the Corridors and on cross-cutting policies. The Coordinators also had a fruitful exchange with the CEO of Deutsche Bahn Dr Richard Lutz and his management team on Corridor investments and digitalisation of rail. Ms Trautmann also met with Kathrin Schneider, Minister for Infrastructure and spatial planning of Brandenburg, and Regine Günther, Senator for Environment, Transport and Climate Protection of Berlin. They discussed projects for the sustainable development of public transport in and around the urban node Berlin.
Visit to Małaszewicze, 23 May 2019
Upon invitation of the Polish Vice-Minister Andrzej Bittel, Coordinator Trautmann visited the rail terminal in Małaszewicze to learn more about planned investments and capacity enhancements of the transloading zone. She also visited the ongoing CEF-supported works on the E20 railway line.
Rail Baltica Task Force, 22 May 2019, Warsaw
The Rail Baltica Task Force met at political level in Warsaw on 22 May 2019. The topics included presentations on the progress in each country, measures to enhance military mobility, feedback on the ongoing discussions regarding the future management of the line, as well as operational and innovation aspects.
Working Group on Interoperability – ITS deployment on roads, rail and IWW on the NSB Corridor, 7-8 May 2019, Hamburg
The Working Group meeting focused on strategies and financing schemes for the deployment of ITS on the NSB Corridor across all modes, and in particular in port cities for last mile traffic and efficient port logistics. Best practice examples on ITS strategies, projects, smart solutions, were introduced and information on the policy framework for ITS, digitization and CEF funding was provided. During the second day, the participants took part in a guided tour around the Port of Hamburg to better understand the smart ITS used by port authority.
Friends of Rail Baltica in the European Parliament, 16 April 2019, Strasbourg
Upon invitation of MEP Roberts Zile, the Friends of Rail Baltica gathered in Strasbourg to exchange information on the progress of Rail Baltica with Coordinator Trautmann, Vice-Ministers and high-level representatives from the five Member States and the management of RB Rail. The future EU budget for large scale cross-border transport infrastructure projects was also discussed.
Seminar of the European Coordinators and meeting with the EIB and with the European Court of Auditors, 9-10 April 2019, Luxembourg
During their seminar in Luxembourg, the European Coordinators exchanged views with the representatives of the EU Court of Auditors in charge of the audit on “Transport Infrastructure flagship projects” along the TEN-T Corridors, including Rail Baltica. They also met the European Investment Bank to discuss new established financing mechanism and tools by the Bank and their added-value with European funding mechanisms for large transport infrastructure.
Meeting with Latvian Minister for Transport Talis Linkaits, Rail Baltica Global Forum, 3 April 2019, Vilnius
Coordinator Trautmann met with the Latvian Minister for Transport Tali Linkaits to discuss next steps for the Rail Baltica project and attended the Rail Baltica Global Forum in Vilnius on 3 April 2019, along with Director general Henrik Hololei and ERTMS Coordinator Matthias Ruete. The conference gathered around a thousand participants, including executives and decision makers, rail, logistics and economics experts as well as potential suppliers for the realisation of Rail Baltica from across Europe. Ms Trautmann also chaired a side meeting with representatives of the Ministries of Transport, Defence, Economics and Finance of the five countries connected by Rail Baltica.
Final Conference of the Interreg projects NSB CoRe, Scandria®2Act and TENTacle, 6 March 2019, Brussels
The Interreg flagship projects NSB CoRe, Scandria®2Act and TENTacle, which all addressed the transport networks around the Baltic Sea Region, held their joint final conference on 6 March in Brussels. Coordinators Anne Jensen, Pat Cox and Catherine Trautmann participated in the discussions and expressed their support for the further work foreseen in the Scandria Alliance and the BSR Access Platform.
Meeting with Minister of Transport of North Rhine Westphalia Hendrik Wüst, Urban node conference Cologne, 11 February 2019, Cologne
On 11 February 2019, Coordinator Trautmann met with the Minister of Transport of North Rhine Westphalia Hendrik Wüst, visited the rail node of Cologne, and spoke at the urban node conference organised by the regional public transport association NVR. The main topics were the bottlenecks in the rail node of Cologne, implications for the regional and international traffic and planned investments and solutions.
Working Group on Interoperability –Alternative fuels infrastructure deployment on the NSB Corridor, 29-30 January 2019, Brussels and Halle (Flanders)
The Working Group started with an overview of the alternative fuel policy context at the EU level, best practice examples and innovative financing schemes for alternative fuel deployment. Strategies, opportunities and challenges while deploying these solutions were discussed (e.g., interoperable payment systems). During the second day, a site visit and presentations by the Belgian retail group Colruyt gave practical examples of alternative fuel infrastructure deployment (hydrogen, CNG, electricity).
Rail Baltica Task Force, 20-21 December 2018, Riga
The European Coordinator co-chaired the Rail Baltica Task Force, where the infrastructure development in the nodes of Riga and Kaunas were discussed, as well as the plans for the construction of the cross-border section between Elk and the Polish-Lithuanian border, along with other topics. The Coordinator also met with the Foreign Investors Council in Latvia, and with the staff of the Joint Venture RB Rail.
Coordinators’ seminar, 18-19 December 2018, Brussels
Catherine Trautmann participated to the seminar of the 11 European TEN-T Coordinators, who met with Commissioner for Transport Violeta Bulc on this occasion. The topics of the seminar included the impact of investments in the TEN-T, the status of the CEF 2 negotiations, the ERTMS deployment status and future plans, as well as the impact of financial support to dual military-civilian transport infrastructure on the TEN-T network as of 2021, amongst other topics.
12th Corridor Forum meeting, 26 November 2018, Brussels
The twelfth NSB Corridor Forum gathered about 55 participants, including Member States, Regions, Ports and Infrastructure Managers of the Corridor. The upcoming activities of the third phase of the Corridor study were presented and discussed and the Coordinator presented her activities since the last meeting. INEA reported on CEF-funded projects with relevance to the Corridor, and DG MOVE informed about the transport research & innovation under the Horizon 2020 programme and its proposed successor programme.
Supervisory Board of RB Rail, 15 November 2018, Brussels
The Supervisory Board of RB Rail met with Director-general Henrik Hololei to discuss the progress of the Rail Baltica project and next steps. The European Coordinator also attended the regular Supervisory Board meeting in her capacity as observer.
Meeting with the Polish Minister of Infrastructure, Mr Andrzej Adamczyk, and Plenipotentiary Mikolaj Wild, 14 November 2018, Warsaw
The European Coordinator met the Polish Minister of Infrastructure, Mr Andrzej Adamczyk, and the State Secretary in charge of the Central Transport Hub project, Mr Mikolaj Wild, to learn more about this new airport planned in the centre of Poland and the related rail and road connections, and to discuss latest developments on the North Sea-Baltic Corridor in Poland.
Meeting with Friends of Rail Baltica in the European Parliament, 24 October 2018, Strasbourg
Together with the State Secretaries / Vice-Ministers of the Baltic States and Poland, as well as the Joint Venture RB Rail, the Coordinator met with the Friends of Rail Baltica in the European Parliament, to update on the project’s progress and discuss the outlook for its future EU financial support.
Coordinators’ seminar, 4-5 October 2018, Brussels
European Coordinators gathered in Brussels on 5 October 2018 to discuss topics of common concern, such as the further evolution of the TEN-T and the state of play of the Commission proposal on a Connecting Europe Facility 2. Horizontal priorities (ERTMS and Motorways of the Sea), cross-border cooperation, military mobility were also on the agenda. Coordinators welcomed Ms Jensen, Ms Radicova and Mr Ruete as new members of the team and expressed their gratitude to Mr Brinkhorst and Mr Simpson whose mandate as Coordinator ended on 15 September 2018.
Visit to the Port of Antwerp, 4 October 2018
Catherine Trautmann visited the Port of Antwerp and had an exchange with the CEO Jacques Vandermeiren on the port business and urban development and the rail connections from the port to Germany, among other topics. She also visited the Combinant rail-road terminal.
Visit of the railway node in Kaunas, Supervisory Board of RB Rail, 12-13 September 2018, Kaunas and Riga
The European Coordinator joined representatives of the Ministry of Transport of Lithuania, Lithuanian Railways and the Joint Venture RB Rail for a site visit to the railway node of Kaunas, which will be a crucial connecting point of Rail Baltica. Thereafter, she met with the Rail Baltica Business Network in Kaunas and participated as observer in a Supervisory Board meeting of RB Rail on 13 September in Riga.
Rail Baltica Task Force, 30 August 2018, Brussels
A high-level Rail Baltica Task Force meeting took place on 30 August in Brussels, chaired by the European Coordinator. The progress of the project and in particular the cross-border section between Poland and Lithuania was discussed, and Finland expressed an interest to become a member of the Joint Venture RB Rail.
Rail Baltica Task Force and Supervisory Board of RB Rail, 25-26 July 2018, Tallinn
The Coordinator chaired the Rail Baltica Task Force meeting in Tallinn on 25 July and participated in the Supervisory Board of RB Rail as observer on 26 July, in Tallinn. Topics of the Task Force meeting included the governance of the cross-border project and the plans for further development of the RB infrastructure in Lithuania.
ESPO Annual Conference, 31 May-1 June 2018, Rotterdam
Along with several other European Coordinators, Catherine Trautmann participated in the Annual Conference of the European Sea Ports Organisation, hosted by the Port of Rotterdam. The discussions focussed on investment needs in ports, public acceptance, and the multimodal approach of the TEN-T Corridors.
ITF Summit on Transport Safety and Security, 23-24 May 2018, Leipzig
The ITF Summit 2018, which took place under Latvian presidency, was dedicated to Transport Safety and Security. Coordinator Trautmann participated in a panel debate on the security and resilience of supply chains, and met with the authorities in charge of road safety of the Baltic States and Poland, in view of a possible flagship project on road safety.
NSB CoRe Moving Conference and RB Business network, 14-15 May 2018, Helsinki
Together with the Regional Mayor of Uusimaa Region, Mr Ossi Savolainen, the European Coordinator welcomed the participants of the moving conference organised in the framework of the NSB CoRe project in Helsinki on 14 May. The moving conference had travelled by train and partly by coach all the way from Berlin up to Tallinn, continuing the journey beyond Helsinki, up to Umeå. The Coordinator also participated in a meeting with Finnish businesses, organised by the Rail Baltica Business Network.
TEN-T Days and NSB Corridor meeting, 25-27 April 2018, Ljubljana
Catherine Trautmann presented her third work plan in the North Sea-Baltic Core network Corridor meeting held in the margins of the TEN-T Days 2018. She also had a discussion together with her colleague Coordinators with Commissioner Oettinger to present their Joint Position Paper on the future of European transport infrastructure funding, as a follow-up to the meeting held in January 2018.
Rail Baltica Global Forum, Baltic Ministerial Meeting on Rail Baltica, 10-11 April 2018, Tallinn
The second Rail Baltica Global Forum was organised by RB Rail on 10 and 11 April 2018 in Tallinn. The European Coordinator moderated the ministerial panel session, gathering the Ministers in charge of Transport of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania and the State Secretaries from Poland and Sweden. On this occasion, the Coordinator also hosted the first Baltic Ministerial meeting on Rail Baltica, gathering representatives of the Ministries of Transport, Economy, Defence and Finance.
Visit to RB Rail AS, Rail Baltica Business Network and Rail Baltica Steering Group, 20-21 March 2018, Riga
During her stay in Riga on 20-21 March 2018, the European Coordinator visited the headquarters of RB Rail and met with its personnel, participated in a meeting of the Rail Baltica Business Network in Latvia and moderated a meeting of the Rail Baltica Steering Group on an integrated project delivery organisation.
Meeting of the Friends of Rail Baltica in the European Parliament, 13 March 2018, Strasbourg
The Friends of Rail Baltica in the European Parliament met with European Commissioner Violeta Bulc on 13 March, who presented her assessment of the progress of the Rail Baltica project. The meeting was attended by 12 Members of the European Parliament, representing six political groups and almost all Member States of the NSB Corridor. The European Coordinator answered questions on her views on the project and its future perspectives, following on a presentation by the representatives of the Joint Venture RB Rail.
Coordinators’ Seminar and Hearing in the European Parliament’s TRAN Committee, 26 February 2018, Brussels
The European Coordinators had a joint hearing at the European Parliament’s TRAN Committee on 26 February. Ms Trautmann’s intervention focussed on innovation and technological challenges, as well as the key developments of the North Sea-Baltic Corridor. Prior to the hearing, the Coordinators held an internal seminar on strategic orientations for the next long-term budget of the EU.
Visit to Amsterdam and The Hague, meeting with Minister Cora van Nieuwenhuizen, 7-8 February 2018
The European Coordinator visited The Netherlands on 7 and 8 February, where she met with Minister Cora van Nieuwenhuizen to exchange views on the Corridor development, as well as with representatives of the Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management. A number of innovative projects was presented at the “Connekt” cluster in Delft, relating to smart mobility, automated transport, cars, vessels and trains. In Amsterdam, the Coordinator visited the construction site of the new lock at Ijmuiden, met with representatives of the Port and the city of Amsterdam, and gave a keynote speech at a national event on Smart and Green Mobility.
Rail Baltica Task Force meeting, 6 February 2018, Brussels
At the Rail Baltica Task Force, representatives from the Baltic States and Poland exchanged information on the interim results of the feasibility studies for the railway cross-border section of the Corridor between Elk and Kaunas, and discussed the further alignment of timetables and parameters. A draft Implementing Decision on Rail Baltica was also discussed.
European Coordinators’ seminar and meeting with Commissioners Violeta Bulc and Günther Oettinger, 30-31 January 2018, Brussels
On 30 January 2018, the TEN-T Coordinators were invited by Violeta Bulc, Commissioner for Transport and Günther Oettinger, Commissioner for Budget and Human Resources to discuss issues related to the next MFF perspectives and infrastructure investments in the EU.
On 31 January 2018, the Coordinators were invited by INEA for a working session on the outcome of the CEF projects and their adequate reporting. This was followed by a seminar between Coordinators to exchange views on CEF 2 and on the TEN-T Days in Ljubljana.
Joint BAC-NSB Working Group of Regions and Urban Nodes, 28-29 November 2017, Poznan
Upon invitation of the Wielkopolska Region, the Coordinators Catherine Trautmann and Kurt Bodewig organised a joint working group meeting of the regions, urban nodes and macro-regions along the North-Sea Baltic and Baltic-Adriatic Corridors. This event took place in Poznan, at the crossing point of the two corridors. The working group aimed at discussing jointly about the integration of the urban nodes in the core network and their role as last mile sections of the corridors. On the second day, a technical visit of the CLIP Logistics Terminal has been organised.
European Coordinators’ seminar, meeting with Commissioner Violeta Bulc, Inland Waterways Dialogue and EP seminar on CEF and TEN-T, 14-15 November 2017, Strasbourg
On 14 November 2017, the European Coordinators exchanged views in an internal seminar with the DG MOVE management on different topics linked to the future development of the TEN-T corridors and their financing. The seminar was followed by an open discussion with Commissioner Bulc on the short and medium term objectives of the actions to implement the TEN-T networks.
On 15 November, the Coordinator participated in the Waterways and Ports dialogue organised by the sectoral associations as well as the Investing to Connect Europe Conference in Strasbourg.
Rail Baltica Business Network and Digital Transport Days, 8-9 November 2017, Helsinki and Tallinn
At the Digital Transport Days in Tallinn, the Coordinator moderated a session on the social dimension of the transition to automation and gathered with stakeholders in view of setting up an ITS flagship project on the NSB Corridor. On the previous day, Catherine Trautmann participated in a Rail Baltica Business Network lunch in Helsinki, updating and exchanging with the Finnish business sector on the development of Rail Baltica.
Transnational roundtable of the NSB CoRe project, 26 October 2017, Berlin
Catherine Trautmann gave a keynote speech at the transnational roundtable of the NSB Connector of Regions (CoRe) project in Berlin. She encouraged the stakeholders to make use of the Corridor approach for the deployment of innovative transport solutions.
11th NSB Corridor Forum and Rail Baltica meeting, 23 October 2017, Brussels
At the 11th NSB Corridor Forum, the Corridor consultants presented the outcome of the 2nd phase of the NSB Corridor study, INEA informed on the results of the recent CEF calls for the Corridor, and the Coordinator outlined the main novelties of the third Corridor Work Plan. The state of play of the Rail Baltica project was also presented by the project promoters.
Connecting Europe Conference and Informal Transport Council, 21-22 September 2017, Tallinn
The Connecting Europe Conference, organised jointly by the Commission and the Estonian Council presidency, gathered a large audience around debates on the future investment policy and priorities on the TEN-T. The Coordinator took part in the panel discussion on delivering smart and low-emission mobility. She also attended the Informal Council of Transport Ministers on 21 September 2018 and had a number of bilateral meetings with project promoters and public authorities.
10th NSB Corridor Forum, 13 June 2017, Brussels
At the tenth Corridor Forum, the intermediate outcomes of the Corridor study on the elements to be integrated in the third version of the Work plan were presented and discussed. The meeting also had a special focus on ITS developments and flagship projects as well as an update from the NSB Rail Freight Corridor and the implementation of the Rail Baltica cross-border project.
Conference of the Baltic Assembly and the Baltic Council of Ministers on Transport connections; meeting with the Estonian Minister for Economic Affairs and Infrastructure, Ms Kadri Simson, 26 May 2017, Tallinn
The European Coordinator participated in a conference on developing transport connections and infrastructure in the Baltic region, organised by the Baltic Assembly and the Baltic Council of Ministers, presenting her views on the Rail Baltica project to the Members of Parliament and government representatives. Road infrastructure and intelligent traffic management systems were also addressed by the conference. A further exchange with Minister Kadri Simson allowed to exchange on the latest developments with regards to Rail Baltica in Estonia.
Hearing at the Committee for Transport and Tourism of the European Parliament, 4 May 2017, Brussels
On 4 May 2017, the European Coordinator reported to the Members of the Committee for Transport and Tourism of the European Parliament about the progress of the North Sea-Baltic Corridor as well as the horizontal work following the issues papers on integrating urban nodes in the TEN-T corridors as well as on innovation. The importance of cooperation with urban nodes in tackling challenges of congestion, air quality and noise by developing innovative and sustainable solutions along the TEN-T Corridors was underlined and triggered a good discussion with MEPs.
Working group of ports and inland waterways, 3 May 2017, Liège
The North Sea-Baltic and the North Sea-Mediterranean Corridors' working groups on ports and inland waterways held a first joint meeting hosted by the Region of Wallonia and the Port Authority of Liege on 3 May 2017. The topics discussed included the multimodal aspects of the work plans of both Corridors, funding and financing of IWW infrastructure, as well as the users' perspective and digitalisation.
Rail Baltica Global Forum; meeting with the Estonian Minister for Economic Affairs and Infrastructure, Ms Kadri Simson and with the Latvian Minister for Transport, Mr Uldis Augulis, 24-25 April 2017, Riga
On the occasion of the Rail Baltica Global Forum, where the revised cost-benefit analysis for the global Rail Baltica project was presented, the European Coordinator had exchanges with the Estonian Minister for Economic Affairs and Infrastructure as well as with the Latvian Minister for Transport, on several aspects of the Rail Baltica project. The Global Forum also discussed more broadly the socio-economic impact of railway infrastructure such as the Rail Baltica and served to inform suppliers about the procurement framework and upcoming opportunities.
Coordinators' seminar and meeting with Commissioner Violeta Bulc, 29-30 March 2017, Brussels
The European Coordinators discussed the status, needs and future trends up to 2030 for the realisation of the Core Network Corridors amongst each other and with Transport Commissioner Violeta Bulc.
Regional Transport Investment Conference; meeting with the Polish Vice-Minister for Economic Development, Mr Jerzy Kwiecinski and with the CEO of RB RAIL, Ms Baiba Rubesa, 23-24 March 2017, Sofia
During the Regional Transport Investment Conference organised by DG MOVE in Sofia on 23-24 March 2017, the European Coordinator had meetings with the Polish Vice-Minister for Economic Development on the transport investments supported by the CEF in Poland and with the CEO of RB RAIL on the implementation of the Rail Baltica project in the Baltic States.
Meetings with the Finnish Minister for Transport and Communications, Ms Anne Berner, with Finnish Regional Mayors, with the Estonian Deputy Secretary General, Mr Ahti Kuningas, and with the Lithuanian Minister for Transport and Communications, Mr Rokas Masiulis, 20-22 March 2017, Helsinki, Tallinn and Vilnius
During a mission to Helsinki, Tallinn and Vilnius, the European Coordinator had meetings with the Ministers for Transport and Communications of Finland and Lithuania, as well as the Estonian Deputy Secretary General, discussing the progress of the North Sea-Baltic Corridor and the Rail Baltica project in particular. In a meeting with Regional Mayors from Finland, the potential extension of the Corridor to Tornio (FI/SE state border) was discussed.
Rail Baltica Task Force and meeting with a delegation from the Elbe-Weser region led by State Secretary Mr Enak Ferlemann, 21 February 2017, Brussels
A Rail Baltica Task force meeting was initiated by the European Coordinator to discuss in detail the plans for the realisation of the cross-border section between Lithuania and Poland. It was agreed to align the studies and decision-making processes closely in the further implementation. The Coordinator also met a delegation from North-West Germany led by State Secretary Ferlemann to discuss TEN-T policy and projects.
Meeting with the Lithuanian Vice-Minister for Transport and Communications, Mr Ricardas Degutis and CEO of Lithuanian Railways, Mr Mantas Bartuska; Supervisory Board meeting of RB RAIL, 1 February 2017, Vilnius
The European Coordinator participated in the Supervisory Board of RB RAIL as an observer, witnessing how the concrete implementation of the project, which has received substantial CEF co-funding and additional political backing via the signature of an Intergovernmental Agreement on 31 January 2017, is gaining speed. Exchanges with the new Vice-Minister for Transport and Communications of Lithuania, Mr Degutis, and CEO of Lithuanian Railways, Mr Bartuska, allowed touching several issues such as optimisation of the economical case of the project in the overall transport market of the region, the connection of Vilnius, and the cooperation with other project partners.
Visit of the port of Brussels, 31 January 2017, Brussels
The European Coordinator visited the port of Brussels and discussed aspects related to sustainable urban logistics and the role of the port in the urban context as well as in connection to the maritime ports.
9th Corridor Forum and FEPORT Conference, 7-8 December 2016, Brussels
With the second version of the Work plan being under approval by the Member States, the ninth Corridor Forum launched the new cycle towards the preparation of the third version of the Corridor Work plan. The meeting included a presentation by the consultancy team and discussion of the planned next steps of the Corridor study, and a specific focus on Motorways of the Sea and inland waterways.
Coordinators' seminar, 15-16 November 2016 , Spa
All European Coordinators gathered in Spa to discuss the common orientations for the revision of the Corridor Work plans, funding and financing aspects, the follow-up of the issue papers presented in June 2016 and communication of impact and results achieved by the TEN-T policy.
Meeting of the European Coordinators with Commissioner Violeta Bulc, 27 October 2016, Brussels
The European Coordinators had the opportunity to exchange with European Commissioner Violeta Bulc on the progress of their work and future strategic orientations during a meeting on 27 October 2016 in Brussels.
Conference on TEN-T Core Network Corridors, 18-19 October 2016, Warsaw
The challenges and opportunities related to the TEN-T Core Network Corridors were discussed at this conference organised by the Polish Ministry of Infrastructure and Construction, in which high-level representatives of the Visegrad countries as well as three European Coordinators participated. Apart from the focus on the two TEN-T Corridors crossing Poland, some wider topics related to urban nodes, transport and logistics, as well as macro-regional strategies were also discussed.
Open Days seminar on Rail Baltica, 12 October 2016, Brussels
The municipalities of Helsinki, Riga, Tallinn, Kaunas and Jonava organised a joint seminar on the Rail Baltica project on the occasion of the Open Days 2016 at the Representation of Lithuania to the EU. The status of the project and its implications for the local population were discussed by several speakers, including local and regional Mayors, the European Coordinator and the Chair of the TRAN Committee of the European Parliament, Michael Cramer.
8th NSB Corridor Forum and Working groups of Regions/Urban nodes and Ports/RRTs, 28-29 September 2016, Brussels
The eighth Corridor Forum took stock of the progress of the Corridor study in view of the preparation of the second edition of the Corridor Work plan. The results of the 2015 CEF call and upcoming funding opportunities in the framework of CEF were also presented. Meetings of the working group of Regions and Urban nodes as well as the working group of ports and railroad terminals were held back to back with the Corridor Forum. Topics included the characteristics and performance of the North Sea-Baltic Corridor as a multimodal infrastructure; problems and solutions for last mile transport; cooperation with the Baltic Sea Macro-Region and opportunities related to the EU urban agenda.
Visit to Lower Saxony and North-Rhine Westphalia, 19-20 September 2016, Salzbergen, Münster/Osnabrück and Hannover
The European Coordinator made several site visits in the Regions of Lower Saxony and North Rhine-Westphalia, including the port of Osnabrück, the railway and urban node of Hannover and the municipalities of Salzbergen and Ascheberg. These were opportunities for exchanges of views with the business communities, Members of the European Parliament, State Secretary Enak Ferlemann, the President of the Region of Hannover and representatives from the local and regional governments. Meetings with the press were also part of the programme. The importance of efficient transport networks for the industry was evident throughout the visits, as well as the challenges related to growing traffic volumes.
Rail Baltic Task Force and meeting with the Lithuanian Vice-Minister for Transport and Communications, Mr Arijandas Sliupas, 12 July 2016, Vilnius
Main topics discussed at the Rail Baltic Task Force meeting on 12 July 2016, were the follow-up of the Joint Declaration of Rotterdam, the further process for adoption of the Intergovernmental agreement, as well as collaboration with the Rail Freight Corridor in view of building up traffic on the Rail Baltica North-South axis. Ms Trautmann also met with the Lithuanian Vice-Minister Arijandas Sliupas on this occasion, for an exchange of views on the next steps for the Rail Baltic project.
Rail Freight Corridor Executive Board and Management Board meeting, 12 July, 2016, Vilnius
On 12 July 2016, Coordinator Trautmann participated in a joint meeting of the Management Board and the Executive Board of the North Sea-Baltic Rail Freight Corridor in Vilnius. The meeting provided an opportunity for the parties present to take stock of the recent developments on the Rail Freight Corridor and the state of play on the Core Network Corridor and to exchange views on next steps. Ms Trautmann suggested ERTMS deployment and raised port hinterland and urban nodes issues as potential areas for further collaboration. The extension of the RFC to Latvia and Estonia by 2020 was also discussed.
TEN-T Days 2016, 20 to 22 June 2016, Rotterdam
From 20 to 22 June 2016, Ms Trautmann participated in the 2016 edition of the TEN-T Days in Rotterdam. Highlights included the signature of a Joint Declaration of the Ministers for Transport of the five partners of the Rail Baltic/Rail Baltica project (Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland), bilateral and multilateral meetings with the Ministers for transport of The Netherlands, Belgium, Flanders, Finland and Poland, and the presentation of the update of the North Sea-Baltic Corridor Work Plan to a wider public in a dedicated Corridor meeting with a distinguished panel of stakeholders along the Corridor. In the context of the presentation of the issues papers, Ms Trautmann also participated as a speaker in the interactive plenary 'TEN-T Corridors: Forerunners of a forward-looking transport system', a thematic session on 'Innovation on the TEN-T: Why and where?' as well as a thematic session on 'Urban nodes on the TEN-T Corridors'.
Smart Cities and Communities General Assembly, 24 May 2016, Eindhoven
In the context of the issue papers on innovation and urban nodes, Ms Trautmann participated in a high-level panel at the Smart Cities and Communities General Assembly in Eindhoven on 24 May 2016. The debate focused mainly on the complementarity of different EU funding and financing instruments, potential adjustments thereof, and the role of cities in creating innovation ecosystems and contributing to the fight against climate change.
Meeting with the Latvian Minister for Transport, Mr Uldis Augulis, 18 May 2016, Leipzig
The new Latvian Minister for Transport, Mr Uldis Augulis, confirmed Latvia's full commitment to the Rail Baltic project, to the role of the Joint Venture RB RAIL in managing the company and reaching coordination of all partners, as well as to concluding on the Intergovernmental Agreement. Ms Trautmann insisted on the importance of the project for the whole Corridor, on making rapid progress in its implementation, confirming the mandate of the Joint Venture and to agree on next steps in a Ministerial Joint Declaration at the TEN-T Days.
International Transport Forum, 18 May 2016, Leipzig
At the ITF 2016 Summit in Leipzig on 'Green and Inclusive Transport', Ms Trautmann spoke at a session on hinterland supply chains. Topics discussed by the panel included the issue of how the European Corridor’s approach can help in addressing bottlenecks in port hinterland traffic, optimisation of infrastructure investments, greater integration of modes and services, as well as the effect of mega-sized ships on ports and especially on hinterland traffic.
Meeting with the German Minister for Transport and Digital Infrastructure, Mr Alexander Dobrindt, 12 May 2016, Berlin
Following an invitation by the German Minister for Transport and Digital Infrastructure, Mr Alexander Dobrindt, the European Coordinators dealing with the Corridors crossing Germany met the Minister in Berlin on 12 May 2016, for a presentation of the Federal Investment Plan 2030. The discussion focused on common priorities for the development and maintenance of European transport networks in Germany.
Meeting of the 'Friends of Rail Baltic' in the European Parliament, 10 May 2016, Strasbourg
The second meeting of the Members of the European Parliament supporting the Rail Baltic project took place in Strasbourg on 10 May 2016. 11 MEPs were present, from six different Member States and six political groups. Ms Trautmann and RB RAIL CEO Baiba Rubesa informed MEPs about the recent developments of the project. The MEPs decided to jointly send an open letter to the governments of the five partner countries supporting a joint and smooth implementation of the project, and to continue to meet regularly.
Rail Baltic Task Force, 28 April 2016, Riga
Topics discussed by the Task Force on Rail Baltic included the Intergovernmental Agreement prepared for ratification by the national Parliaments, the preparation of a Joint Declaration for signature of the five Ministers of Transport at the TEN-T Days 2016, as well as the alternatives for upgrade/new construction of the 1435 mm gauge line south of Kaunas.
Visit to the rail node of Bremen and the ports of Bremen and Bremerhaven, 20 April 2016, Bremen
On 20 April 2016, Ms Trautmann visited the railway node Bremen, as well as the ports of Bremen and Bremerhaven. Following a site visit and presentation by DB Netz AG on the issues at stake around the Bremen main railway station and the wider urban node area, the Coordinator visited the ports and had an in-depth discussion with representatives of EUROGATE, BLG Auto Terminal and Bremen ports in Bremerhaven. The visit ended with a meeting with Mr Martin Günthner, Senator for Economy, Labour and Ports of Bremen.
Meetings with stakeholders from the railway sector, 18 and 19 April 2016, Warsaw
On the occasion of her visit to Warsaw, Ms Trautmann had an exchange of views with various stakeholders from the railways sector in Poland, including the RFC NSB Office Director, as well as representatives from DB Schenker, Fundacja Prokolej, STS/CLIP Logistics and ERS Railway.
Meeting with the Polish Vice-Minister for Infrastructure and Construction, Mr Piotr Stomma, 19 April 2016, Warsaw
The Coordinator held a first meeting with the Polish Vice-Minister in charge of railways, Mr Piotr Stomma, on 19 April 2016, in Warsaw. The main topic was Rail Baltica, with an exchange of views on recent progress and next steps concerning both the Lithuanian-Polish cross-border section and the global project.
Transport Research Arena, 18 April 2016, Warsaw
In the context of the issue paper on innovation, Ms Trautmann gave a speech at the opening plenary of the 2016 edition of the TRA Conference in Warsaw. In her speech, Ms Trautmann paid particular attention to the role that the Corridors can play in fostering a collaborative approach to deployment of innovative solutions.
Helsinki Regional Urban node conference and kick-off meeting of the NSB CoRe Interreg project, 6 to 7 April 2016, Helsinki
On the 6 and 7 April 2016, Ms Trautmann participated in a high-level conference on TEN-T and urban node issues, organised by the Finnish Ministry of Transport and Communications and the Finnish Transport Agency in Helsinki. Around 80 European and local participants discussed the development of transport links between the twin cities, Helsinki and Tallinn, the Arctic dimension, Motorways of the Sea and mobility as a service. Back to back to the event, the kick-off of the Interreg project 'NSB CoRe' (Connector of Regions, involving 40 partners along the NSB Corridor) was held on 7 and 8 April with participation of the Coordinator. Finnish industry stakeholders expressed strong interest in the realisation of the Rail Baltic project in a side meeting organised by Siemens Finland and attended by Coordinator Trautmann and RB RAIL CEO Baiba Rubesa. Ms Trautmann and European Coordinator for Motorways of the Sea, Brian Simpson, also participated in a site visit to one of the ice-breakers based in Helsinki.
Seventh NSB Corridor Forum and Task force Rail Baltic, 17 March 2016, Brussels
During the seventh Forum of the NSB Corridor, the consultants' consortium presented intermediate results of the analysis of the project list, as well as of the analysis of the technical compliance of the Corridor with the requirements of the TEN-T Regulation and KPI. Further exchanges took place with regards to recent and upcoming events, communication activities and next steps in view of the TEN-T Days in Rotterdam.
Coordinators' Seminar and meeting with Transport organisations, 2 and 3 March 2016, Brussels
All European Coordinators gathered in Brussels on 2 and 3 March 2016, for an internal seminar as well as a meeting with transport-related organisations based in Brussels, on the general TEN-T development as well as on the issues papers on horizontal issues that link TEN-T and other transport policy developments.
Roundtable debate on Rail Baltica, 23 February 2016, Vilnius
Upon invitation of the Committees for European Affairs and for Economic Affairs of the Lithuanian Parliament, Ms Trautmann participated in a roundtable debate on the Rail Baltic/Rail Baltica project on 23 February 2016, in Vilnius. The presentations and debates focused on the progress of implementing the Rail Baltic/Rail Baltica project in the three Baltic States. The Joint Venture RB RAIL AS, as well as stakeholders from the three Baltic States participated in the round table debate.
European Coordinators' Seminar with the EIB, 27 to 29 January 2016, Luxembourg
All European Coordinators gathered in Luxembourg for a joint seminar with the EIB at the end of January 2016. Exchanges focused on the Bank's activities and on financing possibilities under EFSI, in particular. Selected project promoters of major cross-border projects were also invited to a session dedicated to an exchange of experience on crucial aspects such as permitting and procurement.
Sixth Corridor Forum and Regions' Working Group, 9 and 10 December 2015, Brussels
The sixth Corridor Forum covered a wide variety of topics, ranging from the progress of the Corridor study (with a focus on KPI and project list structure), Motorways of the Sea (intervention by Coordinator Brian Simpson), a presentation of the development of the Rail Freight Corridor North Sea-Baltic, the 2015 CEF call, EIB operations linked to the NSB Corridor, as well as the issue papers on horizontal topics prepared by several Coordinators. During the Regions' working group, the progress of the Corridor study was also discussed, as well as ongoing regional initiatives and EU funding opportunities.
Visit to the Dutch-German EUREGIO, 8 December 2015, Gronau and Hengelo
On 8 December 2015, Ms Trautmann visited the logistics hub of the EUREGIO (Dutch-German border area covering parts of the Dutch provinces Gelderland, Overijssel and Drenthe, as well as parts of the German federal states, Nordrhein-Westfalen and Niedersachsen). Through a series of presentations and debates, the companies’ concerns with regards to the Corridor development and cross-border cooperation and mobility issues were discussed. The Coordinator was also granted a site visit of the CTT Combi Terminal Twente, providing the Coordinator with an opportunity to become further acquainted with the daily operations and innovative solutions provided by the terminal.
Meeting with Mr Sennhenn, CEO of DG Netz AG, 5 December 2015, Brussels
On 5 December, the European Coordinators in charge of the six Corridors crossing Germany, and of the Horizontal Priority, ERTMS, met with the CEO of the German rail infrastructure manager, DB Netz, Mr Frank Sennhenn. During an interactive presentation and debate, DB Netz AG and the Coordinators addressed multiple issues like facts and figures of the company, project prioritisation, cooperation between Rail Freight Corridors and Core Network Corridors, ERTMS deployment on the German network, the Bundesverkehrswegeplan and future steps.
European Coordinators' Seminar, 15 and 16 October 2015, Brussels
All European Coordinators were gathered in Brussels on 15-16 October to discuss topics of common concern, such as the horizontal priorities (ERTMS and Motorways of the Sea), linking TEN-T and transport policy developments, cross-border cooperation at local and regional level, innovative financial instruments and innovation.
Breakfast meeting with Members of the European Parliament on Rail Baltic project, 15 October 2015, Brussels
Upon invitation of Latvian MEP Roberts Zile, ECR Coordinator in the EP's Transport Committee, Ms Trautmann shared her views on the progress and next steps for the Rail Baltic project with MEPs from six different countries and political groups during a breakfast meeting on 15 October. New Director General of DG MOVE, Mr Henrik Hololei, was also present and expressed his strong support to the project. It was agreed to continue the exchange between the European Coordinator and MEPs in the future.
Visit to the Port of Hamburg, 30 September 2015
On 30 September, Ms Trautmann visited the city and port of Hamburg, as one of the key nodes on the Corridor. She met with the first Mayor, Mr Olaf Scholz, as well as the Senator for Economy, Transport and Innovation, Mr Frank Horch, for an exchange of views on Corridor-related and urban node issues. After a visit of the port by ship and by car, an in-depth exchange with representatives of the Hamburg Port Authority followed, focusing especially on innovative projects in the port.
5th North Sea-Baltic Corridor Forum, 29 September 2015, Brussels
The fifth Corridor Forum of the NSB Corridor took place in Brussels on 29 September 2015. The new Corridor Consultants' Team presented the work that will be carried out over the next months and years to deepen the analysis of the Corridor, in particular with regards to the project list and key performance indicators, and consequently to update the Work Plan. The forum members were asked to provide feedback on the methodology. The Forum was attended by more than 45 members, consultants and EC representatives.
Urban Nodes Conference, 20 September 2015, Berlin
Upon the initiative of the Berlin-Brandenburg region, a conference on urban nodes was organised with the support of the European Commission on 20-21 September 2015 in Berlin. Together with Coordinator Pat Cox, Ms Trautmann participated in the panel discussions with national and regional representatives, Members of the European Parliament, as well as industry. A cooperation agreement of the stakeholders in Berlin and Brandenburg was handed over to the European Coordinators and MEPs. The conference conclusions will feed into a special issue paper on urban nodes in the TEN-T that Ms Trautmann committed to deliver in spring 2016.
Baltic Ports Conference, 2 to 4 September 2015, Riga
Given the strong maritime dimension of the NSB Corridor and the importance of the hinterland connections for ports in the Corridor Work Plan, Ms Trautmann joined the Annual Baltic Ports Conference in Riga to discuss these topics. She delivered a presentation on linking maritime and land transport on the NSB Corridor and also participated in a site visit of the port of Riga.
Rail Baltic Task Force, 2 September 2015, Riga
Following the Riga Declaration, the European Coordinator as well as representatives from Finland and Poland take part in the intergovernmental Rail Baltic Task Force on a regular basis. The meeting on 2nd September in Riga was the first in this enlarged setup. Topics included the conclusion of the Grant Agreement for the Joint Venture's CEF project with INEA, preparations for the second CEF call, latest developments in each partner country, and the planned intergovernmental agreement on Rail Baltic.
Site visit to Warsaw-Bialystok-Kaunas-Vilnius, 26 to 28 August 2015
On 27 August, Ms Trautmann, joined by political and technical representatives from Poland, Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia, took a special train to travel from Białystok (PL) to Kaunas (LT). The site visit on the line, passing through Ełk, Suwałki and Šeštokai, was depicted in the Lithuanian and Polish media as a historical event since it was the first passenger train, albeit 'experimental', to cross the border and to run up until Kaunas since 1939. A number of presentations and discussions took place on board the train. The construction of the new European gauge line on the Lithuanian side was co-funded through the Cohesion Fund and the TEN-T programme. The impression was that more can be done to upgrade the line on both sides of the border to reap the full benefit of the mutual connection and increase the speed of travel. Environmental aspects in this sensitive area need to be taken carefully into account, but compensations and other solutions seem possible.
TEN-T Days 2015, 22 and 23 June 2015, Riga
On 22nd and 23rd June, Ms Trautmann participated in the 2015 edition of the TEN-T Days. Highlights included the signature of a Joint Declaration of the Ministers for Transport of the five partners of the Rail Baltic/Rail Baltica project (Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland), bilateral and multilateral meetings with Ministers and MEPs, as well as with representatives of the Belgian federal and regional Ministries, and the presentation of the North Sea-Baltic Corridor Work Plan to a wider public.
Hearing at the European Parliament's TRAN committee, 16 June 2015, Brussels
Ms Trautmann presented the main issues of the NSB Corridor Work Plan to the members of the Committee for Transport and Tourism. A number of questions were raised by the MEPs, enquiring about the Coordinator's work and her views on the progress of the Rail Baltic project in particular. Some more specific questions concerned missing links in inland waterways, the role of certain ports, the railway bottleneck in the Helsinki node and the connection to the Arctic region. A few general questions were also raised, such as on EFSI's potential for rail and inland waterways, progress of ERTMS deployment, cooperation with regional authorities or the Coordinator's involvement in the sea basin / macro-regional strategies.
Meeting with the Latvian Minister for Transport, Mr Anrijs Matīss, 15 June 2015, Brussels
Ms Trautmann has met the Latvian Minister for Transport on 15 June 2015 in Brussels. They had an exchange of views on the Joint Declaration of the five partner countries on the Rail Baltic project to be signed at the TEN-T Days in Riga. They also reported on recent meetings held with the other partners. Ms Trautmann also stressed the need to continuously empower the Joint Venture RB Rail AS.
Meeting with Ms Anne Berner, Minister for Transport and Communication of the Republic of Finland, 11 June 2015, Luxembourg
On the occasion of the Transport Council on 11 June in Luxembourg, Ms Trautmann met with the new Finnish Minister for Transport and Communication, Ms Anne Berner. They discussed progress of the Rail Baltic project, the upcoming TEN-T Days in Riga of 22nd-23rd June 2015, as well as the innovative aspects of the North Sea-Baltic Corridor.
Seminar "European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI) and the Trans-European Network (TEN) - Challenges and Chances", 2 June 2015, Representation of Saxony-Anhalt, Brussels, and meeting with the Transport Minister of Saxony Anhalt, Mr Thomas Webel
As Coordinator of one of the three Corridors passing through the German Land Saxony-Anhalt, Ms Trautmann participated in a conference on the EFSI and TEN-T organised by the region in Brussels on 2nd June. She stressed the vital role of regions and cities in finding the right solutions to finance the right infrastructure projects, but also their needs in order to make the most of new financial instruments, such as within the framework of the EFSI.
Meeting with the Estonian Minister for Economic Affairs and Infrastructure, Mr Kristen Michal, 28 May 2015, Brussels
The Coordinator met the new Estonian Minister for Economic Affairs and Infrastructure, Mr Kristen Michal, on 28 May 2015 in Brussels. The main topic was the Rail Baltic project and the priorities for Estonia in implementing the North Sea-Baltic Corridor.
Partners' meeting for an Interreg project "Connector of Regions", 8 May 2015, Berlin
A number of Regions and cities along the North Sea-Baltic corridor in its Eastern part (from Berlin to Helsinki) met on 8 May 2015 in Berlin in order to prepare for submission of an Interreg project to follow up on the previous "Rail Baltica Growth Corridor" project. Ms Trautmann gave a keynote speech and expressed her strong support for this bottom-up initiative.
Meeting with the Lithuanian Minister for Transport, Mr Rimantas Sinkevičius and Vice-Minister Arijandas Šliupas and meeting of the Polish-Lithuanian subcommittee on transport, 7 May 2015, Vilnius
Ms Trautmann discussed the progress of Rail Baltic with the Lithuanian Minister for Transport, Mr Rimantas Sinkevičius on 7 May in Vilnius. Both agreed on the need to accelerate the concrete implementation of the project and for good cooperation of all partners. The minister also informed about the ongoing discussions with Latvia to fix the border crossing point. The meeting was followed by a trilateral session with the Vice-Minister Arijandas Šliupas (Lithuania) and Undersecretary of State Sławomir Żłobka (Poland), as part of the Polish-Lithuanian subcommittee on transport series of meetings. The Coordinator also participated in a field visit of the intermodal terminal in Kaunas in this framework on 6 May.
Conference "Prospects of high-speed rail in Poland", 6 May 2015, Warsaw
On 6 May, Ms Trautmann spoke at the conference "Prospects of high-speed rail in Poland", organised by the Polish Railway Experts and Managers Association and Railway Institute together with a number of partners from industry and science. She stressed the potential of high-speed rail as a structuring element for the transport system and the economy, but noted that scarce public resources make it necessary to operate many difficult choices as well as to look increasingly for private sources of investment in transport infrastructure.
Meeting with the Polish Minister for Transport, Ms Maria Wasiak, and Undersecretary of state Mr Sławomir Żałobka, 5 May 2015, Warsaw
The Coordinator had the pleasure to have a long discussion with the Polish Minister, Ms Maria Wasiak, on 5 May 2015 in Warsaw. Topics included the Work Plan for the North Sea-Baltic corridor, the Rail Baltic project and in particular its cross-border section between Poland and Lithuania, as well as general issues and priorities for the development of transport infrastructure in Poland.
Meetings with Members of the European Parliament, 22 April 2015, Brussels, 30 April 2015, Strasbourg
On April 22 and 20, Ms Trautmann met several MEPs from Baltic countries and Poland in order to discuss the Rail Baltic project. All MEPs expressed their full support to the project and were happy to hear the views of the European Coordinator on its progress.
Meeting with representatives from Bremen, 15 April 2015, Brussels
Presentation of the issues for the port of Bremen and Bremerhaven (4th biggest container terminal in EU, 2nd in Germany): hinterland connections, railway bottlenecks and traffic evolution and export rates/trans-shipment share. Hinterland traffic is predicted to double by 2030. All trains to the port have to pass the city twice due to the need to change locomotives in a shunting yard, which raises concern among the population. The city is going to invest 40M Euros to enhance rail infrastructure. Comparatively high share of rail and IWW hinterland traffic. Ms Trautmann accepted the proposal to visit the port at a later stage.
Ms Catherine Trautmann, European Coordinator
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