Mobility and Transport

Inland waterways

Inland waterways

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What do we want to achieve ?

Inland waterway transport plays an important role for the transport of goods in Europe. More than 37,000 kilometres of waterways connect hundreds of cities and industrial regions. 13 Member States have an interconnected waterway network. The potential for increasing the modal share of inland waterway transport is significant. Compared to other modes of transport which are often confronted with congestion and capacity problems, inland waterway transport is characterised by its reliability, energy efficiency and major capacity for increased exploitation. The European Commission aims to promote and strengthen the competitive position of inland waterways in the transport system, and to facilitate its integration into the intermodal logistics chain.

Inland waterway transport is a competitive alternative to road and rail transport. In particular, it offers an environment-friendly alternative in terms of both energy consumption and noise emissions. Its energy consumption per km/ton of transported goods is approximately 17 % of that of road transport and 50 % of rail transport. In addition, inland waterway transport ensures a high degree of safety, in particular when it comes to the transportation of dangerous goods. Finally, it contributes to decongesting overloaded road networks in densely populated regions.

 

Legislation

Directive (EU) 2017/2397 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 12 December 2017 on the recognition of professional qualifications in inland navigation and repealing Council Directives 91/672/EEC and 96/50/EC

Directive (EU) 2016/1629 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 14 September 2016 laying down technical requirements for inland waterway vessels, amending Directive 2009/100/EC and repealing Directive 2006/87/EC

Regulation (EU) 2016/1628 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 14 September 2016 on requirements relating to gaseous and particulate pollutant emission limits and type-approval for internal combustion engines for non-road mobile machinery, amending Regulations (EU) No 1024/2012 and (EU) No 167/2013, and amending and repealing Directive 97/68/EC

2006/87/EC Directive of the European Parliament and of the Council of 12 December 2006 laying down technical requirements for inland waterway vessels and repealing Council Directive 82/714/EEC

Summaries of EU legislation: Technical requirements for inland waterway vessels

Directive 2005/44/EC on harmonised river information services (RIS) on inland waterways in the Community

Directive 96/50/EC on the harmonisation of the conditions for obtaining national boatmasters' certificates for the carriage of goods and passengers by inland waterway in the Community

 

Brexit

PDF iconNotice to stakeholders - Withdrawal of the United Kingdom and EU rules in the field of aviation security and maritime security

Notice to stakeholders - Withdrawal of the United Kingdom and EU rules in the field of industrial products

PDF iconNotice to operators subject to Union legislation in the field of inland waterways

Internal EU27 preparatory discussions on the framework for the future relationship: