Finland the first country to preside over the International Transport Forum
In the spring 2007 the European Conference of Ministers of Transport, ECMT, transformed into International Transport Forum, ITF, an intergovernmental organisation within the OECD family. For the first year the Presidency of the International Transport Forum will be held by Finland. Meetings will be chaired by Ms Anu Vehviläinen, Finland's Minister of Transport.
The ITF is a global platform and meeting place of political decision-makers, business, industry, research and the media. In between the annual meetings the highest decision-making power is held by the Transport Management Board. During the Finnish Presidency, the Board will be chaired by Mr Juhani Tervala, Director-General of the Transport Policy Department at the Ministry of Transport and Communications.
The Forum meets annually in Leipzig, Germany. During Finland's term of Presidency the meeting will be held on 28-30 May 2008 under the theme of Transport and Energy: The Challenge of Climate Change. The Forum will discuss issues such as the influence of transport on climate change, energy efficiency in transport, and alternative fuels.
The first ITF meeting will be given a Finnish touch. For example, Finland will be hosting a welcome reception for all participants on the opening evening. The Forum participants, panellists, and keynote speakers will include Finnish opinion leaders and top specialists.
Finnish know-how in the field of transport will be displayed in an exhibition arranged in connection with the meeting.
The new International Transport Forum comprises 52 member countries. New full members include the big OECD member countries: the USA, Canada, Japan, Korea, Australia and Mexico. Like the ECMT before, the International Transport Forum is an associate organisation of the OECD.
Mr Juhani Tervala, Director-General of the Transport Policy Department, tel. +358 050 552 7260
Ms Minna Kivimäki, Ministerial Adviser, tel. +358 9 160 28013