The European Commission welcomes the agreement reached by the Council, enabling the EU to push ahead with building a sustainable and smart trans-European transport network (TEN-T) that connects 430 major cities with ports, airports and railway terminals. The proposal will also strengthen transport connections with Ukraine and the Republic of Moldova to increase the capacity of the ‘Solidarity Lanes‘, used for imports and exports between both countries and the EU. Today’s agreement opens the way for adoption of the Commission’s legislative proposals of December 2021, and its July 2022 amendments, and demonstrates Member States’ commitment to the EU’s ambitious climate targets.

The Commission’s proposal to revise the current TEN-T Regulation strengthens infrastructure requirements in view of achieving more efficient and sustainable transport services and of shifting passengers and freight towards more sustainable modes of transports.  To this end, the revised Regulation requires, for example, that TEN-T passenger lines allow trains to travel at 160 km/h or faster by 2040. It calls for more transhipment terminals, improved handling capacity at freight terminals, reduced waiting times at rail border crossings, and longer trains to shift more freight onto cleaner transport modes. All 430 major cities along the TEN-T network will have to develop Sustainable Urban Mobility Plans to promote zero-emission mobility, and to increase and improve public transport. Provisions to make the TEN-T more resilient to the effects of climate change are also included. And the Commission proposal reinforces the governance of TEN-T to assure the timely completion of the network – by 2030 for the core network, 2040 for the extended core network, and 2050 for the wider, comprehensive network.

Today’s agreement will form the basis of discussions between the Commission, the Council and the European Parliament within trilogues. The Parliament is set to finalise its position at the beginning of next year, clearing the way to conclude the co-decision process and adopt the new TEN-T Regulation at the end of 2023. The new Regulation should be operational from 2024.

The Commission also welcomes the adoption of Council conclusions on the Naiades III action plan  2021-2027, boosting future-proof European inland waterway transport in the EU.

Source: European Commission