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Joint Statement on Railways and Combined Transport

The Minister of Transport and Communications of the Czech Republic, the Minister of Transport and Water Management of the Republic of Hungary, the Minister of Transport and Maritime Economy of the Republic of Poland and the Minister of Transport, Posts and Telecommunications of the Slovak Republic

  • considering the existing good co-operation among their countries as well as their intention to support the development of the economic and commercial relations with special regard to the regional aspects,regarding the agreement reached by the Czech, Hungarian, Polish and Slovak Prime Ministers on their meeting in Krakow and their informal discussions in Tihany in 2001 on strengthening their co-operation and emphasising the importance of the improvement of infrastructure,
  • bearing in mind the importance of activities and objectives of the European Union with special regard to the White Paper on European Transport Policy of the EU published in 2001,
  • taking into account the need for implementation of the relevant Trans-European Transport Network projects with special regard to Pan-European Transport Corridors IV, V, VI and VII connecting their countries,
  • driven by desire to promote efficient railway transport between their countries and the further development of combined traffic,
  • emphasising the concept of the so called "railways without borders",

agreed in Visegrád on 19th October 2001 to

  • EXPAND co-operation which will contribute to the development and harmonisation of their transport policies in respect of the European integration and a wider international scope as well,
  • CREATE the Forum of Transport Ministers of V4 Countries to be co-ordinated by the transport minister of the country that takes the Presidency of the Visegrad Group,
  • FACILITATE the extended use of environment friendly transport modes such as railways, inland navigation and combined transportation,
  • PROMOTE the development of rail sections of Pan-European Transport Corridors IV, V, and VI as defined at the 3rd Pan-European Transport Conference,
  • SUPPORT all activities that are aimed at improving the integration of the railways of the Central-European Region into the European network of railways,
  • FEEL it necessary to facilitate the forwarding of trains taking part in combined transport with a simplified control at border crossings,
  • INFORM each other regularly about their new regulations and amendments in the framework of EU legal harmonisation,
  • CONSIDER the improvement of railway transport and the promotion of its competitiveness as an important issue in their relationship in accordance with the recommendations of the White Paper on European Transport Policy,
  • MAKE EFFORTS to obtain financial contributions from the European Union for the realisation of the railway projects connected to the above-mentioned Pan-European Transport Corridors,
  • INVITE national railway companies to further expand co-operation based on the declaration signed by the delegates of V4 railway companies in Senec on 29th May 2001, facilitate a closer relationship between the railway companies of their countries in order to create better conditions for railway and combined transport, stress the importance of co-operation in international railway organisations, take steps to further improve the quality of railway services and the co-operation in the fields of tariffs, timetables and marketing,
  • CALL UPON their experts of combined transport to further elaborate the document on the development of combined transport on the basis of this Statement
  • PROMOTE the elaboration and inauguration of combined transport routes (Ro-La, Ro-Ro and unaccompanied transport) among V4 countries,
  • HOLD regular meetings in order to discuss and evaluate the co-operation in the fields fixed in this document.
Done at Visegrád, on 19th October 2001, in four originals, in the English language.

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