Port of Rotterdam urges EU to ‘put implementation of energy transition center stage’

The Port of Rotterdam Authority has appealed to the European Union (EU) to work on stable policies and a vigorous stimulus of green energy and a circular economy.

Port of Rotterdam; Photo: Martens Multimedia

In its latest position paper, the Port of Rotterdam stated that the EU needs to “position ports smartly for future-proofing Europe.” This comes at times when the EU faces the challenge of reconciling the transition to a sustainable economy with preserving our prosperity. Fit for 55 and REPowerEU are aimed at achieving this.

“Put implementation of the energy transition centre stage and use European ports intelligently to secure strategic autonomy,” Boudewijn Siemons, CEO of the Port of Rotterdam Authority said.

“Geopolitical tensions and increased pressure on industry demand a strong stance from the European Union. The port of Rotterdam has a large industrial complex and is a major hub for containers, energy and raw materials. Here, as in many other European ports, there is a confluence of major challenges, such as making international transport more sustainable, reliable supply chains for businesses and consumers and accelerating the sustainability of industry without losing competitiveness.”

“Consequently, ports can and want to play an important role in future-proofing Europe. It is no accident that in Rotterdam we say: when the port is doing well, the European economy is doing well,” emphasized Siemons.

Many industrial companies in Rotterdam are keen to invest in making their production more sustainable but have not yet made a final investment decision.

For them, it is crucial that the European investment climate offers sufficient securities and prospects for the future. The European Emissions Trading System (ETS) encourages industry to become more sustainable and the Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM) reinforces a level playing field globally.

Broad, stimulus-based European industrial policy is a necessary complement to maintaining commercial activity, especially if Europe wants to reduce its dependency on other countries and remain a leader in innovative, sustainable manufacturing.

To ensure that implementation of the energy transition continues apace, and is not delayed by a lack of capacity on the electricity grid, for example, the Port Authority is asking the EU to work on an approach based on acceleration areas in industrial clusters such as ports.

The port also advocates accelerating the build-up of renewable energy chains in Northwest Europe. European funds can contribute to this.

The Port of Rotterdam is investing heavily in making transport more sustainable over the next few years. Last year saw major investment decisions that are contributing to making the port and the logistics chain to and from Rotterdam greener.