Transport: Ports and the Trans-European Network

United Kingdom

Ports and the Trans-European network

The Commission has published a Green Paper on sea ports, with a view to opening debate on improving port and maritime infrastructure. The Green Paper suggests improvements to current policies and identifies areas for new initiatives, such as charging and market access.

The Commission has also tabled a Proposal to integrate port and other interconnection points. If Member States and the European Parliament endorse the plan, 300 European ports would become part of the Trans-European Transport Network (TENs) and priority would be given to the funding of projects for short sea shipping and combined transport, including rail. Short sea shipping has a role to play as an environmentally-friendly form of transport.

Other important areas which the Commission considers are:

  • pricing port infrastructure - so that port users bear the cost of port services and facilities; and

  • removing restrictions on market access - by gradual liberalisation.