European transport ministers were gathering in Bucharest on Thursday to discuss the development of inland waterway transport linking European countries.
The Pan-European Conference of Ministers of Transport was initiated by Romania and The Netherlands in 2000 and held its first session the following year in Rotterdam.
This year's conference is focusing on the evaluation of progress made since 2001 on the implementation modalities of the Integrated Action Programme for Inland Waterway Navigation (NAIADES) and the development of transport infrastructure on inland waterways, as well as environmental protection.
NAIADES is designed to increase the labor force in this area, raise support for research of new technologies in inland waterway transport and promote this type of transport as being commercially attractive.
Romania is eager to see the formation of an inland waterway transport network covering Europe in view of its remarkable potential in this field. The development of river transport would secure the traffic volume through the southeast harbor city of Constanta which lies between the Danube river and the Black Sea and benefit other inland cities that are connected with the Danube river by tributaries.