FEPORT welcomes the Green Deal for Europe and its potential to mainstream sustainability into all EU policies
As promised in her political Guidelines, Commission President von der Leyen presented her Green Deal for Europe on December 11th, 2019. The Communication sets very ambitious objectives for the EU and sends a strong message to the rest of the world regarding Europe’s intention to reduce emissions by at least 50% by 2030 and to transform its economy to become wholly carbon-neutral by 2050.
FEPORT members, who ensure that all cargoes carried by sea continue their journey to the consumers once they reach European ports, are committed since many years to reduce their emissions. They are investing millions of Euros in green equipment, innovative processes and digitalization and joining forces with other actors of the logistics chain (combined transport, inland waterways, road hauliers etc.) to reduce the emissions’ footprint of intermodal operations.
FEPORT members will pursue their efforts to the benefit of all port neighbouring populations as well as port users and other service providers. They welcome the Green Deal’s proposed initiatives on digital and smart logistics and all actions aiming at boosting multimodality and shaping environmental and climate standards that apply across value chains.
European Private Port Companies and Terminals believe that the Green Deal can be an opportunity for Europe, particularly if, as mentioned in the Communication, sustainability is mainstreamed in all EU policies including competition.
In this respect, FEPORT welcomes the announcement regarding the evaluation of the relevant State aid guidelines including the environmental and energy State aid guidelines. Consistency between the objectives of the Green Deal and future competition instruments regarding State Aid, Cartels and Mergers will also be crucial to support EU industries’ competitiveness and ensure a level playing field.
The success of the Green Deal will also be dependent on the financial instruments that will be mobilized to support innovation and the implementation of the proposed actions, for instance in ports. Among others, the role of the EIB will be essential and FEPORT members are looking forward to knowing more about the “renewed sustainable finance strategy”.
Another factor determining the Green Deal’s success will be the EU’s ability to play a leadership role in convincing non-EU countries to engage in the same direction to avoid any status quo that would be detrimental to the environment and the planet. It is therefore a good signal that the Commission seeks to enhance its “green deal diplomacy” and aims at convincing other countries to promote sustainable development as well.
It will also be crucial for the EU to ensure that the Green Deal enables EU industries to gain more competitiveness while becoming more sustainable. In this regard, FEPORT members welcome that the Green Deal is referred to as a “new growth strategy” and that the importance for the EU to maintain its competitive advantage will remain a key priority.
FEPORT and its members will proceed to a thorough analysis of the Green Deal proposed actions and will provide more detailed comments and constructive suggestions in the coming weeks and months.