EU maritime transport investment inefficient: auditors

Many funds invested in port infrastructure in the European Union (EU) were wasted, a new report from the European Court of Auditors said.

A third of EU spending on facilities such as quays, docks and breakwaters at EU seaports between 2000 and 2013 was ineffective and unsustainable, according to the report.

The auditors assessed the maritime freight transport strategies of the European Commission and member states and visited 19 seaports in five EU countries: Germany, Italy, Poland, Spain and Sweden.

The value for money delivered by EU investments in port services totaled 17 billion euros (18.9 billion U.S. dollars) in grants and loans between 2000 and 2013.

The report said that neither the EU nor the member states had a strategic overview of which ports needed funding and for what, while the funding of similar types of infrastructure in neighboring ports led to ineffective and unsustainable investment.

Oskar Herics, a member of the European Court of Auditors responsible for the report, said, “Needs assessments are weak and there is a high risk of the money invested being wasted.”

Read the report: Maritime Transport in the EU: in troubled waters – much ineffective and unsustainable investment

Source: Hellenic Shipping News