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Horta ,  February 11, 2020

2021-2030 Transport Plan at tendering stage, reveals Ana Cunha

The Regional Secretary for Transport and Public Works announced today at the Legislative Assembly in Horta that the procurement procedure launched by the Government for the new Transport Plan for the Azores in the 2021-2030 period is at tendering stage. 

"This Plan aims to be the planning tool for the next cycle of strategic investments in order to address the needs and challenges of the next decade," said Ana Cunha, who spoke during the debate on the maritime transport of goods in the Azores. 

The Secretary for Transport specified that the preparation of this Plan will involve “a broad consultation with the economic, social and political sectors in an open and participatory process. It is intended to reflect the Region's choices, not only regarding the major structural investments to be made but also regarding the general lines of action in the different areas of transport: air, sea and land." 

Ana Cunha recalled that the Regional Government "was and is still available" to analyse and debate the current model for the maritime transport of goods, "together with the various regional operators, and, subsequently, to introduce improvements that will benefit the populations. The primary aim is to enhance this service on all islands and to reduce red tape costs in the Region's global maritime transport model." 

According to her, "it will be possible to introduce changes to the current model," but that there are premises that have to be safeguarded, namely "the supply to all islands with an established frequency and at an equal price for all islands."
"In this, as in other matters, we will never compromise regional cohesion," said the government official.
“Hence, we will continue defending that this model can be improved and perfected. We do not even rule out the possibility of studying another alternative model. But, for this to happen, it will be necessary to ensure a consensus among islands, operators, trade and industry representatives, and the entities representing the different sectors of society on each island," the Regional Secretary stressed, adding that "this has yet to be achieved." 

Ana Cunha said the current model, “according to the Regional Government, has the potential of reconciling the interests of different islands and, consequently, of the Azores. In fact, it ensures the regular supply to smaller islands, which, given their size, would not have the frequency as it has today, without additional costs for the Government." 

Regional Secretary stressed that the Regional Government "also monitors the transport of goods and engages in regular dialogue with shipowners.

"Simultaneously, we talked about improving the predictability of the service for predetermined routes, without prejudice, of course, to the possibility of situations that could compromise this predictability, such as technical, operational or meteorological reasons." added the government official. 

Ana Cunha acknowledged that “there are always the possibility of failures and setbacks in these situations." 
"No matter how perfect the model is - and I am not saying that it is there are and there will always be imponderables.” Taking into consideration the reality of the Azores as an archipelago, “the goods transported will always take some days to arrive in the Region and, occasionally, the bad weather or sporadic breakdowns - ships are machines - delay the operation," said the Regional Secretary. 

For the Regional Secretary, "when some defend the need for a new model that brings more predictability, they are assuming a mistake, since deviations from predetermined routes are mostly related to sea conditions and these are external to any model as well as other causes, namely strikes, breakdowns or port logistics."


Official government press-releases presented in all foreign languages interfaces of the Azorean Government Portal (Portal do Governo dos Açores) are a sub-set of the government's official press-releases daily output and are chosen for translation and publication on the foreign language interfaces based on audience segmentation criteria. The entire collection of the Azorean government press-releases is available in portuguese, here, from the GACS Press Office site.

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