Transport workers are the sector’s “most valuable asset” reads the newly published Sustainable and Smart Mobility Strategy, but proposed initiatives fall short in matching this statement. The ETF reiterates that to fulfil the goals of the Strategy and enable the transition to greener transport, it is essential to address social issues and foster worker engagement.
In light of Digital Transport Days taking place on 18 November, ETF Maritime team has published a paper on the future of waterborne transport. ETF’s vision of a fair and sustainable future of waterborne transport shows that there is an alternative to the current business practices in the sectors.
Inland Waterways is a relatively small transport sector, dominated by small scale enterprises and owner operators working in a transnational environment. This requires a bold approach on the European level in order to offer appropriate social protection. Inland waterways also carry a booming river cruise industry, where workers are often agency staff with poor pay and conditions.
Approximately 40000 people are active on Europe’s 41500km of waterways, of which 11% are women. 24 Member States have waterways but only 14 are part of the interconnected waterway network.
Inland Waterways has approximately a 6.3% share of the total freight volumes in Europe. 65% of all freight transport takes place on the Rhine Corridor of which 70% in the Netherlands and Germany. There is still a vast potential to increase the share of freight carried by inland waterways, since they are reliable, energy efficient and still have a lot of unused capacity.
The Central Commission for Navigation on the Rhine, with the support of the European Commission, regularly publishes an Inland Waterways Market Insight, which can be found in English, French, German and Dutch.
Publication January 15, 2021
ETF IWT section issues a position on Inland Waterways Transport’s role in the green transition, emphasising the need for significant investments to make the sector environmentally and socially sustainable.
News January 4, 2021
The COMPETING project aims to improve the recognition of professional qualifications in the inland waterways sector. Check out the newsletter for the latest updates.
Press Release December 9, 2020