Finland active in the preparations for the Trans-European Transport Network
The preparations for the Trans-European Transport Network (TEN-T) will continue in July under the Czech Presidency of the Council of the European Union. The preparations have advanced well and from Finland's point of view the work will lay a good groundwork for the regulatory drafting in the matter.
Finland considers it particularly important that the future regulation be flexible considering the special characteristics of our country. The long distances should be taken into account in specifying the map and infrastructure requirements.
It is important for Finland that the regulation provide scope for general exceptions to the quality requirements, particularly on the basis of low traffic volumes. Transport volumes lower than in many other Member States have a direct impact on the viability of transport infrastructure projects in Finland, which should also be considered in the grounds for granting EU funding.
Key issue in the Network are ports
For a country like Finland, infrastructures that are favourable for exports, such as ports, are exceptionally important. For this reason, Finland considers it important that the operating environment remains reliable and predictable in terms of TEN-T regulation.
Finland has played an active role in maintaining the position of the current ports as part of the Comprehensive Network. With regard to the Core Network, the ports of Oulu and Kokkola have been promoted, emphasising the security of supply aspects, both in the preparations by public officials and in the discussions at political level.
"For reasons of accessibility and security of supply in the northern regions, we consider it important that the Core and Comprehensive Networks be expanded in Finland with ports. This is also the message we have actively expressed in all discussions," says Minister of Transport and Communications Timo Harakka.
Finland considers that the regulation proposal should take better account of the strategic importance of ports, for example in energy supply, security of supply and the viability of the regions.
What is TEN-T?
1. TEN-T refers to the Trans-European Transport Network, which promotes the sustainable mobility of people and goods.
2. TEN-T links European railways, inland waterways, roads, sea and air connections into an extensive transport network.
3. TEN-T comprises of the Comprehensive Network and Core Network.
4. According to a new proposal, the Network will be built in three stages: the Core Network will be completed by 2030, the extended Core Network by 2040 and the Comprehensive Network by 2050.
5. TEN-T will connect 424 major cities to ports, airports and railway terminals. Once the network has been completed, it will shorten the travel times between these cities.
In June, the Council Presidencies of 2022, France and Czech, together with the Commission and Finland held a discussion on the ports to be included in the network. Negotiations concerning maps will continue in the autumn.
In July, the working groups will continue the preparations under the Czech Presidency, particularly with regard to transport infrastructure requirements.
The European Parliament has started to discuss the proposal for a TEN-T regulation. The position of the Parliament is not expected until the end of 2023.
Johanna Juselius, Special Adviser to the Minister, tel. +358 29 535 7062, [email protected]
Kaisa Kuukasjärvi, Ministerial Adviser, tel. +358 29 535 0330, [email protected]