PDI marks its 10th anniversary with a special General Assembly and the launch of its new website
Attended by its members, the Coordinator of the Rhine-Danube Corridor
– Ms. Ines Ayala Sender, representatives of the European Commission
, the Innovation and Networks Executive Agency
and the Danube Commission
as well as its fellow branch organisations - INE
, IWT Platform
, Pro Danube Austria
and the waterway administration viadonau
, the 10th
anniversary of Pro Danube International was marked on Friday, 26 March 2021, by a festive online edition of the association’s General Assembly. On this occasion, Pro Danube’s new website was officially launched, providing a new point of reference for partners and stakeholders.
Founded in 2011 by Mr. Alexandru Capatu and Mr. Manfred Seitz, Pro Danube International continued to grow, developing into a network of more than 180 companies which have a strategic interest in securing better infrastructure conditions and a higher rate of public & private investments in the Danube transport and logistics system. In its capacity as the main voice of the IWT industry in the Danube Region
, Pro Danube initiated and successfully rolled out projects funded by various EU funding programmes such as the Danube Transnational Programme – DANTE
(2018-2020) as well as in the frame of other funding programmes such as CEF
, Horizon 2020
and TEN-T - all of which produced tangible results widely acknowledged on the transnational level.
Having a unified, harmonised voice that represents the interest of the Danube IWT sector
is, as highlighted by PDI’s Chairman, Mr. Herfried Leitner, beneficial for both the industry and public authorities responsible for the governance of IWT.
PDI is actively involved in initiatives at the EU level having continuously contributed to major policy initiatives such as the European Union Action Programme NAIADES, the European Union Strategy for the Danube Region
as well as the Fairway Rehabilitation and Maintenance Master Plan for the Danube and its navigable tributaries. The association is furthermore actively involved in dedicated expert groups such as:
- Permanent observer of the EUSDR/PA1A Steering Group (since April 2015) as well as active member of the working groups;
- Member of European RIS Expert Groups;
- Member of NAIADES Expert Group;
- Member of FAIRWAY project Advisory Board;
- Member of Good Navigation Status Expert Group;
- Member of DINA – Digital Inland Waterway Area Task Force (since 2017);
- Member of the DTLF – Digital Transport and Logistics Forum (December 2018);
- PIANC (World Association for Waterborne Transport Infrastructure):
- WG125: River Information Services;
- WG156: e-Navigation for Inland Waterways.
Pro Danube’s celebration was honoured by the presence of Ms. Ines Ayala-Sender, the new European Coordinator for the TEN-T Rhine-Danube Corridor as of 1 January 2021. In her keynote speech, Ms. Ayala-Sender highlighted PDI’s role in efficiently bundling the Danube IWT industry’s voice on the European level and its vital role in initiating and facilitating EU-funded projects
which had a positive impact on the overall development of IWT. These projects further strengthened the Danube IWT community, setting the ground for successful subsequent initiatives and projects which shall reflect key aspects of the European Green Deal.
One of the two founders of Pro Danube International – Mr. Manfred Seitz – reflected on the beginnings of the association, on the driving force of his and Mr. Capatu’s enthusiasm for the IWT sector that was and still is present at the heart of PDI. Remembering PDI’s success stories and its evolution as a unified voice of the Danube IWT industry
was a great opportunity to cherish the memory of the late founding father and President of PDI, Mr. Alexandru Capatu.
Underlying PDI’s role as a gateway between public and private entities
, Mr. Antonio Stoean, representing one of the founding members of Pro Danube International – TTS Romania
– argued that digitalisation and greening
are key elements that should play a vital role in PDI’s future initiatives. Moreover, from the sector’s perspective, several short and mid-term actions are needed in order to efficiently adapt IWT to the latest European legislation in terms of emission reduction and alternative fuels. Crucial for a balanced development is a common approach
, whereas the comparatively low intake of innovative technologies must be taken into consideration when shaping the future of IWT.
is a key motto that defines the very existence of PDI, as highlighted by its General Secretary, Mr. Róbert Rafael. This is reflected by the fruitful partnership with related public and private branch organisations such as INE, the IWT Platform, Pro Danube Austria and the waterway administration viadonau. The distinguished representatives of these organisations joined PDI’s celebration marking a decade of commitment for the well-being of the Danube IWT sector
, highlighting in their keynote speeches the excellent collaboration in terms of projects and initiatives.
A new website as key communication platform for the years ahead
The continuous evolution of Pro Danube and its acknowledged impact on the well-being of the Danube IWT sector is reflected in the launch of a new website that features the organisation’s commitment to the well-being of the Danube IWT sector and its expertise in various IWT related thematic fields. With PDI focusing on identifying the needs of the sector & with rolling out EU-wide policy-related-actions on one hand, and PDM on shaping up business cases as well as on developing and implementing transnational projects, on the other hand, the two entities share the same communication efforts and dissemination channels. To this end, four main channels
support Pro Danube on a daily basis to communicate with its stakeholders, namely by means of its website
as well as via the dedicated group's setup making use of the Social Media platforms - Linkedin
, and Instagram
The redesigned website harmoniously integrates various contents as well as improved functionalities, facilitating closer communication with the members and the community at large. It offers quick and easy access to the main information of both Pro Danube International and Pro Danube Management, on past and ongoing projects, provides an overview of its monthly newsletters, publications, events, news and other informative materials facilitating awareness creation and know-how transfer within the IWT community. The highlights are reflected by the Members as well as the Initiatives sections, which give the necessary visibility and hence promote tailored activities to the needs of our sector.