The General Transport Master Plan of Romania was addressed during the meeting of the Committee on Transport and Tourism of the European Parliament in the presence of the representatives of the European Commission – the Directorate General for Transport (headed by Violeta Bulc) and Directorate General for Regional Policy (headed by Corina Cretu).
The Members of the European Parliament wanted to know in detail the structure of the document in relation with the strategic policy of expanding rail networks, given the concerns of the Greens in the EP about a possible drastic reduction of railways in Romania.
The Romanian MEPs pointed out that Romania needed investment in its infrastructure, including the rail one, denying any assumption that our country might renounce the rail infrastructure upgraded or rebuilt with EU co-financing.
They asked that any analysis of the railway transport in Romania to be accompanied by an analysis of the railway system in the entire Europe. They stressed that the current network of railways in Romania, of 11,000 km, has only been reduced by 5% since 1990. In Germany, for example, the reduction has been by 18% in the same period, by 25% in Poland, approximately 15% in France etc. The average EU reduction since 1990 is 8%.
Romania needs approximately EUR 19 bn financing of its rail infrastructure by 2030. The European Commission stressed the fact that almost 50% of all infrastructure fund allocations in Romania would go into the railway transport.
The modernization of lines, electrification of lines that belong to the TEN-T European transport network as well as the purchase of approximately 90 units of rolling stock are objectives set under the MPGTR, which clearly shows that the railway network will gain a lot in the next 15 years.
Although there is no set date for the approval of the Master Plan by the European Commission, the representatives of the institution said they were confident that Romania would have its General Transport Master Plan approved by the end of the year.