Hungary and Slovakia establish a cooperation mechanism to facilitate a cross-border project


On 23rd of September 2020, at the 2nd Coordination Meeting “HU-SK concerning a cross-border hydro-technical project for the joint section of the Danube” which took place a hybrid format in the premises of the Danube Commission in Budapest, representatives of the competent authorities of Hungary (Ministry for Innovation and Technology and General Directorate for Water Management) and Slovakia (Ministry of Transport and Construction) discussed a cooperation mechanism between the two countries to improve navigation on the joint section of the Danube.

In his welcoming speech, Manfred Seitz, Director General of the Danube Commission Secretariat, emphasized that such a comprehensive instrument of cooperation will enable the harmonization of conditions for the successful application of economic and environmental studies to achieve the common goal – a joint European project for the implementation of technical and environmental improvement measures. He also noted that the long periods of low water are pushing for immediate measures that take into account the effects of climate change on both the shipping and environmental sectors and require appropriate solutions at cross-border level.

During the meeting, both sides provided information on the activities undertaken since the last meeting in February 2020. The experts agreed on further steps to take the project forward, including the establishment of relevant implementing structures, such as a steering committee, and an ad hoc working group in the framework of the HU-SK Cross-border Commission. A representative of JASPERS contributed to the discussion by providing information on the direction and timing of SEA and EIA procedures and on the current status of the cooperation agreement prepared by the Jaspers team.

Looking ahead, participants expressed their satisfaction with the results of the meeting, which provided a solid basis for ensuring further project activities.