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latform for the implementation of NAIADES (PLATINA)
Start date: May 31, 2008,

The project identifies the necessary policy actions, brings together the required stakeholders and develops the necessary knowledge and tools in order to accelerate the achievement of the aims of NAIADES - an action plan by the European Commission to enhance the use of inland navigation as part of intermodal freight solutions.In PLATINA, key experts and stakeholders elaborate technical proposals for policy actions in the five NAIADES action areas.Need and added value for Danube Region Strategy:Europes freight transport system has much room for improvement. Congestion, capacity problems and delays affect mobility and economic competitiveness and are detrimental to the environment and quality of life.The EU has committed itself to pursue the goal of shifting transport to less energy-intensive, cleaner and safer transport modes. Inland waterway transport is an obvious choice to play a more prominent role in reaching these targets.Given that inland navigation is often a cross-border transport mode, action at both national and Community level is required. This is why the European Commission developed the action programme NAIADES, which aims at promoting IWT in Europe through a broad range of activities. PLATINA was the coordination platform to implement the action programme.+The activities of PLATINA aimed at the whole European Union, as IWT is relevant for most of the countries. For the Danube region though, they are of special relevance, as the Danube is not only among the major inland waterways of Europe but also the most international waterway in the world. It exhibits pronounced disparities concerning navigation and socio-economic conditions alongside its course. Due to this, the broad set of measures applied by PLATINA, addressed issues concerning markets, technology and education as well as image and infrastructure requirements, with profound impact on the Danube region.PLATINA represented an essential framework for the Danube Region Strategy, accounting for the pan-European perspective and setting the topical parameters for strategy building and action implementation of the EUSDR. Achievements: PLATINA was a coordination and support action aimed at the promotion of inland waterway transport (IWT). The main objective of PLATINA was to support the European Commission, EU Member States and third countries in the implementation of the NAIADES action programme.This was achieved by providing technical, organisational and financial support for targeted policy actions and by building on strong interrelations with existing expert groups, projects and initiatives.In the course of PLATINA, tangible progress in the following fields were made:• opening up new markets for IWT• fostering innovation concerning the fleet• developing better career opportunities in IWT and raise skills• raising awareness of IWT and promote a positive image• improving the infrastructural framework for IWT taking account of environmental and safety requirementsTransboundary impact:PLATINA addressed all European countries with inland waterway transport, as many of the project measures and results are relevant for all of Europe (e.g. the European Hull Database). Furthermore, there were some activities with spatial manifestations, like River Information Centres or river engineering projects, which directly affect the area they are in.The consortium itself consisted of players from Austria, France, The Netherlands, Romania, Belgium, Germany, Finland and Hungary. Furthermore, the PLATINA consortium has received support from key Member States, candidate countries and associated countries: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Croatia, France, Germany, Hungary, the Netherlands, Romania and the Slovak Republic.As a consequence, the focus of the measures lay on these countries.
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