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Brussels, 18 July 2007

The Commission approves an aid scheme for inland waterway transport in Belgium

The European Commission today gave its approval for an aid scheme to boost transportation by inland waterways in Belgium. The scheme will benefit companies operating regular services to and from the port of Brussels. It will apply from 2007 to 2009 and cost €450 000.

The scheme will provide grants to companies operating one or more services transporting containers by waterway from a terminus in Brussels. The aid will be granted only to operators of regular transport lines, be they existing ones (to be operated with greater frequency) or new lines.

The Commission considers that the scheme is compatible with the provisions of the Treaty.[1]

European transport policy supports the use of inland waterways and other environmentally-friendly forms of transport that represent competitive alternatives to transport by road. The European Commission seeks to promote and strengthen the competitiveness of inland waterway transport, in particular by integrating it more into multi-modal supply chains through the NAIADES programme.[2]

[1] Regulation (EEC) No 1107/70.

[2] “NAIADES” – An Integrated European Action Programme for Inland Waterway Transport (COM(2006) 6, 17.1.2006).

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