UNECE work on inland water transport
Inland water transport, including rivers and canals, represents an important, alternative and environmentally friendly way of transporting goods. Inland water vessels can carry the equivalent of between 14 and 500 truckloads and the total external cost of transport amounts to only EUR 10 per 1,000 tonne kilometre.
The United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) works for smooth and efficient inland water transport across the region, as well as for further expansion of networks to take ultimate advantage of this safe and sustainable mode of transport.
In the area of inland water transport, the UNECE deals with a wide range of issues, such as:
* Identification and further development of a European network of inland waterways,
* Pan-European rules and signs used on inland waterways,
* Technical requirements for inland vessels,
* Recognition of the boatmasters' certificates,
* River information services,
* Pollution prevention,
* Inland water transport policy and many others.
This work is accomplished in close cooperation with the European Commission, the River Commissions and other competent international bodies.
The UNECE Working Party on Inland Water Transport (SC.3) is an intergovernmental body which ensures maintenance of relevant legal agreements, such as the European Agreement on Main Inland Waterways of International Importance (AGN). It also adopts UNECE resolutions on the inland water transport issues listed above. SC.3 meets once a year.
The Working Party on the Standardization of Technical Safety Requirements in Inland Navigation (SC.3/WP.3) assists the Working Party on Inland Water Transport in preparing amendments to pan-Europeans technical and safety requirements for inland navigation, such as the European Code for Inland Waterways (CEVNI) and the Recommendations on Harmonized Europe-Wide Technical Requirements for Inland Navigation Vessels (Resolution No.61). SC.3/WP.3 usually meets twice a year in early spring and summer to prepare the annual session of SC.3.