Written question – The Danube-Oder Canal, the Oder Waterway and the TEN-T network – E-015612/2015

The linking of the inland waterways of the Oder and the Danube with the gantry functions of seaports in Western Pomerania represents a unique cross-border hub connecting the North with the South and the East with the West. This hub connects Poland, southern Scandinavia, Germany and the Czech Republic. Thanks to its connection to road and rail transport, it forms a functional and economically important part of the Baltic-Adriatic corridor of the TEN-T network. Constructing a cross-border Danube-Oder Canal would contribute to the development of the internal market in Central Europe and to fulfilling the stated goals of transport policy. Regrettably, neither the Danube-Oder Canal, nor the Oder Waterway, was included in the TEN‐T network, and the sections that existed before 2013 have been removed, making it impossible to finance these investments. Moreover, the mandate of the Innovation and Networks Executive Agency (INEA), which is responsible for the technical and financial aspects of projects, will expire on 31 December 2015.

In this connection:

1. How does the Commission plan to support transport on the Oder River, which crosses Poland, the Czech Republic and Germany, and deal with the issue of completing the Danube‐Oder Canal, which could directly help to achieve the objectives of the EU’s transport policy and promote economic development in Central Europe?
2. Does the Commission plan to announce public consultations on the initiative to construct the Danube‐Oder Canal as an investment of the same type as the European Seine-Scheldt project?
3. Will the Commission extend the mandate of the Innovation and Networks Executive Agency (INEA)?