The third Expert Meeting for the Development of Ports and Port Operations (EM Ports) debated issues high on the European agenda in this field


The third Expert Meeting on the development of ports and port operations (EM Ports) was organized by the Danube Commission (DC) on 21 March 2023. The meeting, chaired by Mr. Werner Auer, Managing Director of Port of Enns (Austria), took place in hybrid format and involved around 100 participants, mostly from port administrations on the Danube.

Representatives from DG Move, Hydrogen Europe, CCNR and DC member states, as well as various project coordinators presented the main policies, regulations and projects relevant for Danube ports and sea ports in the fields of infrastructure, energy transition, greening and digitalization of port activities. Special attention was given to the EU-Ukraine Solidarity Lanes, including the presentation of the excellent results of 2022, coordination efforts and tasks to be carried out in the future, in which the DC Secretariat has been actively involved.

For a better monitoring of the status and further development of port infrastructure, the Secretariat of the Danube Commission proposed a concept for data collection via a web interface and its development into a comprehensive GIS based information system.

The DC Secretariat also presented “Joint Statement of the Danube Port Authorities and Ports Stakeholders”, with reference to its current status, the change in title and relaunching the signing procedure. The signature process has intensified since February 2023 and all interested parties are encouraged to continue signing this document. The next cross-section evaluation of the situation will be in mid-September this year.

It was also decided that the regional workshop on energy transition in ports under the Seanergy project will take place online on 21 September 2023, in cooperation with the DC Secretariat and EM Ports.

The next meeting is scheduled for 12 March 2024 and will be chaired by Mr. Vuk Perovic, Director of Port Governance Agency, Republic of Serbia, who has been proposed by the Secretariat as the next chairperson.