US embassy cable - 03ROME2193

ITALY'S EU PRESIDENCY: TRANSPORT MINISTRY PRIORITIES UNCLASSIFIED

Identifier: 03ROME2193
Wikileaks: View 03ROME2193 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: Embassy Rome
Created: 2003-05-16 14:01:00
Classification: UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY
Tags: ELTN EAIR EWWT EAIR EWWT IT EUN ITELTN EUN
Redacted: This cable was not redacted by Wikileaks.
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 ROME 002193 
 
SIPDIS 
 
SENSITIVE 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: ELTN, EAIR, EWWT, EAIR, EWWT, IT, EUN, ITELTN, EUN 
SUBJECT: ITALY'S EU PRESIDENCY: TRANSPORT MINISTRY 
PRIORITIES 
                       UNCLASSIFIED 
 
 
PAGE 02        ROME  02193  01 OF 02  161421Z 
 
THIS CABLE IS SENSITIVE BUT UNCLASSIFIED.  NOT FOR INTERNET 
DISTRIBUTION. 
 
1. (SBU)  SUMMARY.  ELIMINATING NATIONAL BARRIERS AND CUTTING 
THROUGH BUREAUCRATIC RED TAPE TO ALLOW THE FREE MOVEMENT OF 
GOODS AND PEOPLE WITHIN THE EU IS A TOP PRIORITY FOR ITALY'S 
TRANSPORTATION MINISTRY DURING THE UPCOMING EU PRESIDENCY. 
THE TRANSPORTATION MINISTER'S DIPLOMATIC ADVISOR TOLD US IN A 
RECENT MEETING THAT OTHER PRIORITIES INCLUDE IMPROVING 
SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT IN THE TRANSPORTATION SECTOR, 
REDESIGNING THE TOLL SYSTEM AND ENSURING THE SAFE TRANSPORT 
OF GOODS AND PEOPLE. 
 
2. (U) IN PREPARATION FOR THE ITALIAN EU PRESIDENCY, EACH 
MINISTRY HAS DRAWN UP ITS TOP PRIORITIES.  ALTHOUGH THE PRIME 
MINISTER HAS YET TO GIVE HIS IMPRIMATUR TO THE OFFICIAL 
PROGRAM, MOST, IF NOT ALL, OF THE TRANSPORTATION MINISTRY'S 
PRIORITIES ARE EXPECTED TO BE APPROVED.  END SUMMARY. 
 
3. (SBU)  DURING A RECENT MEETING WITH DIPLOMATIC ADVISOR 
EMILIO MARAINI, WE WERE PRESENTED WITH THE MINISTRY OF 
TRANSPORTATION'S SIX PROPOSED PRIORITIES FOR ITALY'S EU 
PRESIDENCY. 
 
FREE MOVEMENT OF GOODS AND PEOPLE WITHIN THE EU 
--------------------------------------------- -- 
 
4. (SBU) MARAINI BEGAN BY DESCRIBING THE ITALIAN EU 
PRESIDENCY'S PLANS TO STRENGTHEN THE INFRASTRUCTURE AND 
DEVELOPMENT OF THE TRANS-EUROPEAN TRANSPORT NETWORK (TEN-T) 
                       UNCLASSIFIED 
 
PAGE 03        ROME  02193  01 OF 02  161421Z 
IN TERMS OF QUALITY, SUSTAINABILITY, SAFETY AND BALANCE AMONG 
THE DIFFERENT MODES OF TRANSPORT TO ENSURE THE FREE MOVEMENT 
OF GOODS AND PEOPLE.  ACCORDING TO MARAINI, INSUFFICIENT 
INFRASTRUCTURE AND BUREAUCRATIC DELAYS LIMIT THE FREE 
MOVEMENT OF GOODS, A CORE PRINCIPLE OF THE TREATY OF ROME. 
HE POINTED TO THE GRIDLOCK OF TRANSPORTATION THROUGH THE ALPS 
AS A TOP CONCERN FOR ITALY.  HE ALSO CRITICIZED AUSTRIA'S USE 
OF "ECO-POINTS," USED TO CONTROL FREIGHT TRAFFIC EMISSIONS. 
IN MARAINI'S VIEW, "ECO-POINTS" LIMIT THE FREE TRANSIT OF 
GOODS AND ARE NOT THE BEST OPTION EVEN FROM AN ENVIRONMENTAL 
PERSPECTIVE.  THE GOI WOULD PREFER AN EU WIDE SYSTEM OF 
LIMITATIONS OR A TOTAL BAN ON TRUCKS WITH THE MOST HIGHLY 
POLLUTING EMISSIONS. 
 
5. (SBU)  ENLARGEMENT, MARAINI ARGUED, WOULD ALSO SHIFT THE 
EU'S "CENTER OF GRAVITY."  THE EUROPEAN COMMISSION IS WORKING 
WITH A TASK FORCE TO REDESIGN THE TRANS-EUROPEAN NETWORK. 
THE GOI IS WORRIED, HE ADMITTED, THAT THERE MAY BE A TENDENCY 
TO FAVOR NEW EAST-WEST CONNECTIONS OVER NORTH-SOUTH 
CONNECTIONS. 
 
SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT OF TRANSPORT 
------------------------------------ 
 
6. (SBU)  MARAINI ASSERTED THAT THE GOI SUPPORTS AN INCREASED 
USE OF ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY MEANS OF TRANSPORTATION, SUCH 
AS RAILWAYS AND SHIPS.  DURING ITALY'S EU PRESIDENCY, SPECIAL 
ATTENTION WILL BE GIVEN TO THE DEVELOPMENTS OF THE MARCO POLO 
PROJECT, SEA MOTORWAYS AND THE SECOND RAILWAY PACKAGE.  NOTE: 
 THE MARCO POLO PROJECT IS A COMMISSION INITIATIVE TO FUND 
IMPROVEMENTS TO THE ENVIRONMENTAL PERFORMANCE OF THE FREIGHT 
                       UNCLASSIFIED 
 
PAGE 04        ROME  02193  01 OF 02  161421Z 
TRANSPORT SYSTEM.  ITS GOAL IS TO REDUCE ROAD CONGESTION AND 
SHIFT FREIGHT TRANSPORT FROM ROAD TO SHORT SEA SHIPPING, RAIL 
AND INLAND WATERWAY TRANSPORT.  END NOTE. 
 
REDESIGNING THE ROAD TOLL SYSTEMS 
--------------------------------- 
 
7. (SBU)  UPGRADING THE TRANSPORTATION SYSTEM, POINTED OUT 
MARAINI, WILL REQUIRE INCREASED FUNDING.  TO SUPPORT 
FINANCING DECISIONS, MARAINI STATED THAT REVISING THE 
"EURO-VIGNETTE" DIRECTIVE (ON ROAD TARIFF INFRASTRUCTURE - 
I.E. THE TOLL SYSTEM) TO INCLUDE EXTERNAL COSTS (E.G. 
POLLUTION, ACCIDENTS, ETC.) IS A HIGH PRIORITY FOR THE GOI. 
ITALY LOOKS FORWARD TO REACHING, AT A MINIMUM, A POLITICAL 
AGREEMENT WITHIN THE COUNCIL DURING ITALY'S PRESIDENCY. 
HOWEVER, MARAINI ADMITTED THAT SPAIN'S RELUCTANCE TO CHANGE 
THIS DIRECTIVE COULD HINDER A POLITICAL AGREEMENT. 
 
8. (SBU)  AS EACH MEMBER STATE HAS A UNIQUE TOLL SYSTEM, THE 
ITALIANS, DURING THEIR PRESIDENCY, WOULD LIKE TO COME TO AN 
AGREEMENT ON THE INTEROPERABILITY OF TOLL SYSTEMS.  MARAINI 
DIVULGED THAT AN INTEROPERATIVE TELEPASS SYSTEM BASED ON 
GALILEO IS A FUTURE GOAL. 
 
LIBERALIZING TRANSPORTATION SYSTEMS 
 
                       UNCLASSIFIED 
 
                           UNCLASSIFIED     PTQ9731 
 
PAGE 01        ROME  02193  02 OF 02  161421Z 
ACTION EUR-00 
 
INFO  LOG-00   NP-00    AID-00   A-00     ACQ-00   CEA-01   CG-00 
      CIAE-00  COME-00  CTME-00  INL-00   DODE-00  ITCE-00  DOTE-00 
      SRPP-00  DS-00    EB-00    EXME-00  E-00     FAAE-00  UTED-00 
      FMC-01   VC-00    FRB-00   TEDE-00  INR-00   IO-00    ITC-01 
      VCE-00   M-00     AC-01    NSAE-00  NSCE-00  OES-00   OMB-01 
      DHS-00   OPIC-01  ACE-00   SP-00    SSO-00   SS-00    STR-00 
      TEST-00  TRSE-00  USIE-00  EPAE-00  DSCC-00  G-00     SAS-00 
        /006W 
                  ------------------6644AD  161454Z /38 
R 161401Z MAY 03 
FM AMEMBASSY ROME 
TO SECSTATE WASHDC 9976 
INFO EU MEMBER STATES COLLECTIVE 
AMCONSUL FLORENCE 
AMCONSUL MILAN 
AMCONSUL NAPLES 
USEU BRUSSELS 3235 
DEPT OF TRANSPORTATION WASHDC 
 
UNCLAS SECTION 02 OF 02 ROME 002193 
 
SIPDIS 
 
SENSITIVE 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: ELTN, EAIR, EWWT, EUN, IT 
SUBJECT: ITALY'S EU PRESIDENCY: TRANSPORT MINISTRY 
PRIORITIES 
                       UNCLASSIFIED 
 
PAGE 02        ROME  02193  02 OF 02  161421Z 
 
----------------------------------- 
 
9. (SBU)  MARAINI STRESSED THAT LIBERALIZING EUROPE'S 
TRANSPORTATION SYSTEMS (RAILWAYS, AIR AND HARBOR SERVICES) 
AND PROMOTING FREE ACCESS TO THE TRANSPORTATION MARKET BY NEW 
MARKET PARTICIPANTS ARE SOME OF THE KEY GOALS OF THE EU'S 
TRANSPORT POLICY, OBJECTIVES THAT THE GOI SUPPORTS.  WHILE 
RECOGNIZING THE DIFFICULTIES INHERENT IN LIBERALIZING RAILWAY 
SYSTEMS (E.G. EACH COUNTRY HAS ITS OWN SYSTEM AND MOST TRADE 
UNIONS OPPOSE RAILWAY PRIVATIZATION), HE EXPRESSED CONFIDENCE 
THAT LIBERALIZING AIR TRANSPORT SHOULD NOT BE AS DIFFICULT 
SINCE STATE-OWNED CARRIERS ARE DECREASING IN NUMBER. 
 
TRANSPORTATION SAFETY 
--------------------- 
 
10. (U)  TRANSPORTATION SAFETY IS A HIGH GOI PRIORITY, 
EMPHASIZED MARAINI.  THE GOI IS ESPECIALLY CONCERNED ABOUT 
ACCIDENTS ON ROADS AND HIGHWAYS.  ITALY AVERAGES 8,000 - 
9,000 ROAD FATALITIES A YEAR, WHILE IN OTHER COUNTRIES, SUCH 
AS FRANCE AND SPAIN, THOSE NUMBERS ARE EVEN HIGHER.   THUS 
THE ITALIAN PRESIDENCY WILL SUPPORT PROPOSALS INITIATED 
DURING THE GREEK PRESIDENCY THAT INCLUDE TUNNEL SAFETY AND 
ROAD TRANSPORT CONTROLS AND SANCTIONS. 
 
11. (U)  SINCE THE SINKING OF THE OIL-TANKER PRESTIGE, 
MARITIME SAFETY HAS BECOME A GREATER CONCERN TO THE GOI. 
DURING ITS PRESIDENCY, THE GOI WILL SPEED UP NAVIGATION 
SAFETY MEASURES THAT FOCUS ON THE SEA TRANSPORT OF DANGEROUS 
AND POLLUTING GOODS AND MARINE ENVIRONMENT PROTECTION. 
                       UNCLASSIFIED 
 
PAGE 03        ROME  02193  02 OF 02  161421Z 
MARAINI AFFIRMED THAT THE GOI IS PARTICULARLY INTERESTED IN 
PHASING OUT SINGLE-HULL OIL TANKERS MORE QUICKLY AND TO 
IDENTIFY PORTS OF REFUGE IN EACH MEMBER STATE. 
 
12. (U)  IN RESPONSE TO THE PROLIFERATION OF DIFFERENT SAFETY 
REQUIREMENTS FOR RAILROAD SYSTEMS ACROSS MEMBER STATES, THE 
GOI WOULD LIKE TO ESTABLISH COMMON SAFETY STANDARDS. 
GOVERNMENTS WOULD STILL RETAIN THE OPTION OF ADOPTING HIGHER 
STANDARDS, AS LONG AS THEY WERE IMPOSED IN A 
NON-DISCRIMINATORY MANNER. 
 
13. (U)  THE GOI WOULD ALSO LIKE TO SEE AN AGREEMENT WITH THE 
EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT DURING THE SECOND READING OF THE SINGLE 
EUROPEAN SKY "DOSSIER" DURING ITS PRESIDENCY.  PRIORITY WILL 
BE GIVEN TO THE MEASURES REGARDING SAFETY OF PASSENGERS AND 
PROTECTION OF THEIR RIGHTS, SUCH AS REIMBURSEMENT FOR DENIED 
BOARDING AND ON CANCELED AND DELAYED FLIGHTS. 
 
GALILEO 
------- 
 
14. (SBU)  GALILEO IS AN ITALIAN PRIORITY FOR ITS EU 
PRESIDENCY.  MARAINI STATED THAT THE GOI WOULD LIKE TO SPEED 
UP DECISIONS CONCERNING GALILEO, INCLUDING DECISIONS ON THE 
DEFINITION OF SERVICES AND ITS DEPLOYMENT AND OPERATION. 
 
MEETINGS & OTHER EVENTS 
----------------------- 
 
15. (SBU)  THE COUNCILS OF TRANSPORT, TELECOMMUNICATIONS AND 
ENERGY ARE SCHEDULED TO MEET ON OCTOBER 9-10 AND ON DECEMBER 
                       UNCLASSIFIED 
 
PAGE 04        ROME  02193  02 OF 02  161421Z 
4-5.  THE GOI IS PLANNING AN INFORMAL MEETING OF THE 
MINISTERS OF TRANSPORT IN NAPLES, JULY 4-5, 2003, TO WHICH 
WILL BE INVITED THE TEN CANDIDATE COUNTRIES.  ADDITIONALLY, 
THE GOI WOULD LIKE TO LAUNCH A COMMON DEBATE ON THE TEN-T. 
 
ITALY-U.S. COOPERATION 
---------------------- 
 
16. (SBU)  MARAINI REASSURED US THAT THE GOI SUPPORTS THE 
CONTAINER SECURITY INITIATIVE (CSI) AND WOULD WORK WITH THE 
U.S. ON THE SAFETY AND SECURITY OF CONTAINERS.  HE ALSO 
STATED THAT THE GOI IS AWARE OF THE DIFFICULTIES INVOLVED IN 
THE TRANSITION TO A TRANSATLANTIC OPEN SKIES AGREEMENT AND 
SAID, "I HOPE THAT IT WILL BE TREATED WITH COMMON SENSE." 
 
COMMENT: 
-------- 
 
17.  (SBU) MARAINI WAS A FORTHRIGHT AND INTELLIGENT 
INTERLOCUTOR.  WE EXPECT TO CALL UPON HIM FREQUENTLY TO 
DISCUSS SOME OF THE MORE CONTENTIOUS TRANSPORTATION ISSUES WE 
HAVE WITH THE EU. 
SEMBLER 
 
                       UNCLASSIFIED 
 
> 
 2003ROME02193 - Classification: UNCLASSIFIED 


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