VIENNA – On 18 October, the 21st Meeting of the Regional Steering Committee of the Transport Community gathered key stakeholders and policymakers from the Western Balkans and the European Union to discuss transport policies and related projects in South East Europe.
“The Macedonian presidency of the Transport Community got off to a great start with the meeting of the RSC, focusing on the progress made in transposing the EU Acquis in the Western Balkans. We are looking forward to interesting discussions during the Ministerial meeting, which will take place in Skopje in December 2023,” said Committee Chairperson and State Counsellor of the Ministry for Transport and Communications of North Macedonia, Ms Jasminka Kirkova.
Transport Community Director, Mr Matej Zakonjšek, pointed out that in today’s challenging world, which reminds us of the fragility of peace, meetings like the one held by the Regional Steering Committee serve as a testament to cooperation. He also commended the commitment of the Regional Partners and Observers to advance the positive agenda, both within the Transport Community’s work and in other regional initiatives, such as the Berlin Process.
The Committee’s discussions kicked off with the endorsement of the Action Plans and the EU Acquis Progress Report for 2023, a document that outlines the progress achieved in implementing the Transport Community’s Five Action Plans, and provides insights into the transposition of relevant EU legislation, as reported by the regional partners.
The meeting also discussed the main conclusions from the 2023 report on the development of indicative TEN-T extensions of the comprehensive and core network in the Western Balkans.
Conducted by the Transport Community, the first ever analysis of the region’s rail markets, and its findings was presented to the members of the Regional Steering Committee. The agenda also included reports on technical assistance to the regional partners and the operationalisation of the Western Balkan Transport Observatory Database/Information System (TODIS).
The Committee addressed the state of play and the way forward for Montenegro and North Macedonia joining the Community Database on Accidents on the Roads in Europe (CARE), underlining the importance of road safety and accident data collection.
A concept note presented during the meeting introduced “112” service and e-Call, highlighting the necessity of emergency services and communication for the region’s transport systems and speed up emergency response times.
The meeting then touched upon the state of cooperation with Observing Participants, fostering further collaboration efforts in the transport sector across the region.
About the Regional Steering Committee
The Regional Steering Committee (RSC) ensures proper implementation of the Transport Community Treaty, takes decisions in the cases provided for in the Treaty and prepares the work of the Ministerial Council. A South East European Party, currently North Macedonia, presides in turn over the RSC in accordance with the arrangements laid down in the rules of procedure. The chairperson convenes the meetings at least twice a year to review the general functioning of the Treaty and, whenever circumstances so require, at the request of a Contracting Party.