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Ponta Delgada ,  June 08, 2015

Government of the Azores issued its report on the revision of the White Paper on Transport

The Government of the Azores has conveyed to the European Commission its position regarding the revision of the White Paper on Transport, stressing the importance of issues related to accessibility in Outermost Regions.

The position of the Government on the progress achieved since the publication of this strategic EU document in 2011 consists of two contributions submitted to Brussels; one on an individual basis and another under the framework of the (CPOR).

In the context of this public consultation, the Government stressed that accessibility-related issues in Outermost Regions (ORs)are a significant obstacle to the free movement of citizens, goods and services, with additional constraints arising from transportation costs.

Both reports draw the attention of European authorities to the influence of these aspects on competitiveness as well as on social and economic development, either in the Azores or in the other eight outermost regions.

The White Paper was intended to establish a single guide for the transport sector at a European level in order to achieve a competitive system and ensure the access to safe, reliable and affordable mobility resources, while minimising undesirable impacts such as accidents, pollution and climate change.

The report issued by the Regional Government considers that the transport within the archipelago and between the Azores and other region is "a key factor for economic and social development, which increases mobility, promotes trade, industry, creates jobs and, consequently, ensures the well-being of the population."

In this sense, the government official stressed that it requires the European Union to consider specific aspects since there are certain rules that were specifically designed for the size and reality of a continental territory.

The Government of the Azores also states that "the policies and strategies defined in the White Paper to a large extent, have high implementation costs, which are not consistent with Outermost Regions such as the Azores. These regions do have economies of scale and the investment costs to implement these policies do not have the expected economic return," compared with major continental centres. Hence, the Azores submitted, among various proposals addressed to the European Commission, the proposed revision of the criteria for investment support.

The revision of the strategy in force should, therefore, focus on aspects such as the reduction of energy dependency based on fossil fuels, the attractiveness of transport systems, the use of more efficient transport systems with benefits for citizens, the reduction of the environmental impact in terms of pollutant emissions, the reduction of accident rates, the improvement of the network of road, port and airport infrastructures and the increase of safety levels in the use of the transport network.

Outermost Regions are striving for the strengthening of cohesion and territorial continuity in the European Union by involving them and allocating them the necessary financial aid to support transportation costs of economic activities.

Moreover, these regions also request the allocation of financial support for the promotion of the maritime transport of passengers from Outermost Regions to the European continent and within their geographical areas. They have also awarded priority status to the development of a specific, integrated horizontal and suitable approach of the European transport policy to assist the ORs.

The participation in this public consultation, likewise the recent contribution to the revision of the EU Strategy for Maritime Transport, falls within the goals of the XI Government of the Azores in the participation and influence in European debates, particularly in those aimed at the definition of policies, such as those in the area of transport. It requires a special and differential treatment through the adoption of specific measures by the European Union.


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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