On Tuesday 30 August, the official launch of the new Seine-Scheldt Economic Network (‘Economisch Netwerk Seine-Schelde’ – eNES) took place in Zulte, Flanders (Belgium). By signing the declaration of intent, the first 16 partners officially launched this network, which aims to promote the use of the waterway in the Seine-Scheldt project area in Flanders.
On this occasion, Flemish Minister of Mobility and Public Works Lydia Peeters said that thanks to the Seine-Scheldt project, “a positive growth rate for inland navigation” has been recorded and “goods transport on Flemish waterways is increasing from year to year, with more and more companies preferring this sustainable option to 100% road transport“.
Chris Danckaerts, managing director of the Vlaamse Waterweg NV (Flemish waterway operator and member of the Seine-Scheldt EEIG) emphasized that “the scope and ambitions of the Seine-Scheldt project are such that many economic partners and authorities need to be involved and informed”. ENES is therefore a regional network of public and private stakeholders, who want to contribute their experience, share their knowledge of the business world and take an active role in the fields of support to river infrastructure, to the problems of industrial zones with riverside vocation, and to innovative navigation concepts. All this with the aim of stimulating the use of inland waterways within the scope of the Seine-Scheldt project.
This eNES network could therefore have a substantial impact on the economic development of the inland waterways in the Flanders region.