The undeniable success of the 2019 Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) Transport call illustrates a great need for investment in sustainable projects for ports in the comprehensive network. 

On 27 September 2019, the European Commission published its evaluation of the 2019 CEF Transport call. Out of the 64 eligible projects received by the Innovation and Networks Executive Agency ( INEA), 39 have been recommended for funding.

At the occasion of the 2018 General Assembly Meeting of the CPMR in Funchal, several member Regions underlined that lack of available funding to develop sustainable projects in ports of the comprehensive network. Jean Louis Colson, Head of Unit at the Directorate-General for Transport of the European Commission answered these concerns by announcing the launch of a 2019 CEF call targeting ports of the comprehensive network.

This call had two priorities: Projects on the Comprehensive Network and Rail Freight Noise with an indicative budget of 100 million euros, including 65 million for the comprehensive network. The evaluation of this call has been published on 27 September 2019. The call has been a success as a total of 64 projects have been submitted including 56 projects on the comprehensive network. These 56 projects requested about 3,5 times the indicative budget allocated. Finally, 31 projects have been selected on the comprehensive network.

A large group of these projects involves upgrading infrastructure within EU ports to foster multimodality and lowering emissions of pollutants and greenhouse gases in CPMR member Regions. For instance, projects will be conducted in the Grand Port Maritime de La Réunion (La Réunion), the port of Santander (Cantabria), the port of La Rochelle (Nouvelle Aquitaine), the Port of Civitavecchia (Lazio).

Inevitably, the evaluation sets aside several important projects for the development of peripheral maritime regions. However, this call illustrates the need for massive investments in port infrastructures on the comprehensive network. The geographic distribution of the proposals also shows that this need is shared across Europe.

More information on the CEF call 2019 can be found here.