Notification of an Open Call for tender
for Motorways of the Sea projects in the North Sea Region.
thPublication date: 9 November 2009
Last amended: 1st June 2010
This document is an open call to enable bids for EU Motorways of the Sea funding for sea based transport projects in or starting in the North Sea Region.
The North Sea Motorways of the Sea Task Force, in the framework of the Trans European Network Transport (TEN-T), comprised of representatives of the governments and authorities of Belgium and the Flemish region of Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, the Netherlands, Sweden, the United Kingdom and 1Norway is launching this open call.
The call is addressed to consortia comprised of representatives from ports, shipping companies, terminal operators, road hauliers, rail operators, logistics firms, ship brokers, financial institutions, local and/or regional public authorities and infrastructure owners with the aim of encouraging them to submit Motorways of the Sea project proposals, as defined under the priority project No 21 of the TEN-T Guidelines.
Project proposals should be submitted to the ministries or authorities of the Member States concerned and will be evaluated jointly by them according to the criteria described in this notification. If the projects are assessed positively and approved they will be submitted to the European Commission by the respective countries for TEN-T co-funding, in one of the upcoming TEN-T calls for proposals. This does not exclude, where appropriate, application for funding under other EU or Member State financial instruments.
The following paragraphs set out the conditions of the open call in a question and answer format for potential applicants. Contact details are provided if you have further questions. If you are thinking of submitting a proposal we would encourage you to make early contact with the relevant contact point in your country to discuss the proposal.
1 Norway is not a member of the European Union. Norway‟s relations with the EU are regulated
through the European Economic Agreement (EEA). TEN-T is incorporated in the EEA, but not financially. This implies that Norway has to cover its own expenses concerning the TEN-T, and thus that Norway can not apply for TEN-T funding. Norwegian partners can still participate in MoS-projects applying for TEN-T funding, but these partners‟ participation would be at their own expense.
What Are Motorways of the Sea (MoS)?
Motorways of the Sea are existing or new sea-based transport services that form an integral part of door-to-door freight transport logistic chains which provide viable, regular, frequent, high quality and reliable Short Sea shipping links.
In order to facilitate these services funding is available for any part of a relevant logistics chain including hinterland infrastructure. A full description is provided in Article 12a of the TEN-T guidelines which are set out in Annex I below.
Why is this EU funding available?
The European Commission introduced the concept of Motorways of the Sea in its 2001 Transport White Paper. The Commission proposed that the TEN-T network should include a network of Motorways of the Sea which should concentrate flows of freight on sea-based logistical routes in such a way as to improve existing maritime links or to establish new viable, regular and frequent maritime links for the transport of goods between Member States in order to reduce road congestion and/or improve access to peripheral and island regions and States.
In 2004 the revision of the guidelines for the TEN-T included the development of four Motorways of the Sea areas, which collectively form one of the 30 priority projects, which will receive the bulk of EU funding. These areas provide the basis for submitting bids for TEN-T funds to the European Commission. Member State administrations in the relevant areas can call for bids and following an evaluation decide which bids they support to be put forward to the Commission for funding. The Motorway of the Sea area for Western Europe includes the North Sea Region. Since late 2006, representatives of the governments and authorities of Belgium and the Flemish region of Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, the Netherlands, Sweden, the United Kingdom and Norway along with representatives from industry have met regularly to draw up plans to encourage bids for EU funding. As an outcome of this work, we are now publishing this open call for tender
What is funding available for?
Financial support is available for:
; Implementation projects, being either maritime link based projects or wider
benefits projects, which may include
; Infrastructure works: port infrastructures, infrastructures for direct land and
sea access (see Art.12a (2) of the TEN-T Guidelines) as well as inland
waterway and canal infrastructures within the meaning of Art. 12a (3) of the
; Facilities: electronic logistics management systems, facilities to ensure and
enhance safety and security, facilities to simplify administrative and customs
procedures , facilities for icebreaking and dredging operations (see Article 12
a (2) of the TEN-T Guidelines.
; Studies related to the feasibility, scope or implementation of the project.
; Studies taking the form of pilot actions. Pilot actions should pave the way for
deployment of new and innovative concepts and technologies contributing to
implementation of the MoS concept through prototyping, testing and validation.
They can vary from actions related to innovation in setting up new or improving
existing maritime links to achieving MoS actions of wider benefits. In Annex V
you will find a list of possible innovations.
In order to be eligible for Community support, infrastructure and facilities should be of open access to all users on a non-discriminatory basis.
Start-up aid for shipping lines cannot be included in the project proposals submitted under this open call. Start-up aid for shipping lines could be subject of a parallel project proposal under the European Commission‟s Marco Polo II funding programme.
How much is available?
2This call for proposals focuses on the time frame 2009-2013. The total indicative
amount allocated to Motorways of the Sea projects for the four areas by the European 3Commission is ? 310 million. The indicative amounts still allocated for the upcoming years are set out in the table below:
Funding Year Indicative Amount (m?)
2011 up to 150
2012 up to 25
Applicants should be aware that under the TEN -T programme rules the maximum aid level for infrastructure works and facilities is 20% (maximum 30% for cross-border sections) and for studies and pilot actions up to 50%.
It is important to note that any maritime links which are planned to be established or upgraded as part of the project proposal must be in place at least six months before the
end of the project funding period. If they are not in place by then, the European Commission may suspend, reduce or discontinue financial aid for the project. In the event of a reduction in the rate of co-financing, the rate would normally drop to 10%.
2 In principle this call text stays valid for the whole remaining programme period 2009-2013. However, the text may slightly change during this period due to European policy developments. Please always check the latest version of this call text.
3 With “European Commission” the North Sea Motorways of the Sea Task Force means in the
framework of this call text the responsible policy units at Directorate-General Energy and Transport as well as the Trans-European Transport Network Executive Agency (TEN-T EA), established by the European Commission, which is responsible for managing the technical and financial implementation of the Trans-European Transport Network programme.
Who can apply for funds?
Consortium partners can be ports, shipping companies, terminal operators, road hauliers, rail operators, logistics firms, ship brokers, financial institutions, academia, local and/or regional public authorities and infrastructure owners although this list should not be considered definitive. Partnership of both public and private partners in the consortia is worth aiming at.
Project consortia aiming at improving an existing maritime link or establishing a new maritime link should bring together at least two ports from two different member states and should involve a maritime transport operator.
The involvement or association of transport operators and / or shipping companies, covering a specific maritime leg, is fundamental to demonstrate the viability of the proposed improvement of an existing maritime link or the establishment of a new maritime link. This involvement can vary from being a beneficiary with a direct involvement, to letters of support confirming the potential of the project to lead to an improvement of an existing maritime link or establishment of a new maritime link, and stating the operator‟s firm, explicit and credible commitment to participate in the
project (e.g. consultative or operational).
Please note that only TEN-T ports of category A are eligible for co-financing. Seaports of category A are seaports with a total annual traffic volume of not less than 1,5 million tonnes of freight or 200 000 passengers which, unless it is an impossibility, are connected with the overland elements of the trans-European transport network and therefore play a major role in international maritime transport.
Port clusters or groups of ports can participate in consortia. The North Sea Motorways of the Sea Task Force considers port clusters/group of ports to be neighbouring ports that serve the same hinterland and that have signed a formalised co-operation agreement. A port cluster/group of ports furthermore can be made up of ports in more than one country.
All kinds of Motorways of the Sea projects, including study projects, should be jointly submitted by partners in at least two different Member States. Implementation projects should include investments in infrastructure and facilities in at least one Member State. The proposed Motorways of the Sea connections should start in one of the countries participating in this joint call. The end point of the Motorways of the Sea connection can be in a Member State not participating in this joint call. However, the ministries or authorities concerned in this Member State should formally support the project proposal before submission to the European Commission.
One of the partners should be based in a Member State in the North Sea Region. Presently these include Belgium and the Flemish region of Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, the Netherlands, Sweden and the United Kingdom.
Additional participation of partners from other EU Member States is possible. The ministries and authorities issuing this call encourage the submission of project proposals involving more than two EU Member States. They would also strongly encourage the extension of Motorways of the Sea project proposals to Norway or
Russia. However, please note that only infrastructure and facilities in EU Member States are eligible for co-financing by the European Commission.
What information is required in the project proposals?
The language of the project proposals should be English. It should be clearly
indicated which Member States and/or neighbouring countries will be addressed by this project proposal.
The proposals should include at least the information required below, in the following order:
i. a summary of the project, including a schedule of investments and costs. ii. an assessment of how it will improve the short sea shipping element of
multimodal logistic chains in the North Sea region, including evidence. These
logistic chains may extend to other countries in the EU and to neighbouring
countries and regions. The project proposal should describe the origins and
destination of any new freight flows and potential freight corridors. iii. a description of the hinterland connections (road, rail, inland waterways) from the
ports involved. Projects which contribute to the improvement of hinterland
connections from ports will be given preference when proposals are evaluated.
The European Commission itself gives priority to projects aiming at integrating
inland waterways and rail with Motorways of the Sea. The project proposal should 4also describe how the project is linked to the TEN-T Network.
iv. a detailed technical description of the project, including an indicative timetable of
the planned actions and investments. The proposed project could be planned and
implemented in phases. Please indicate the status of project preparation and/or
implementation at the time of submission of your proposal. If the project proposal
includes infrastructure works, it is essential that all applicable national and
European environmental legislation is respected.
v. a detailed account of the investments in relevant port and hinterland infrastructure
and in facilities (for example electronic logistics management systems, facilities to
ensure and enhance safety and security, facilities to simplify administrative and
customs procedures, facilities for icebreaking and dredging operations). vi. a full financial plan. This plan should include: details of the funding sought under
the TEN-T programme, a breakdown of project financing and investments and a
clear description of any other funding being applied for (European, National,
Regional or Institutional). Applicants should be aware that under the TEN -T
programme rules the maximum aid level for infrastructure is 20% (maximum 30%
for cross-border sections) and for supporting research up to 50%.
vii. an assessment of how the investments and actions will contribute to the objectives
of the Motorways of the Sea concept within the TEN-T and of this call for
proposals (see art. 12a of the TEN-T guidelines in Annex I).
4 Maps of the TEN-T Network, can be found on
viii. details on the cargo potential of the connection, including indications of the
catchment areas ,types of cargo to be attracted, modal shift and external cost
reduction. The project proposal should include clear projections, expressed in
tonne-kilometres, of the modal shift from road haulage the scheme would generate
when the scheme becomes fully operational. These estimates of modal shift from
road haulage and of external cost reduction should cover the period up to at least
2013 and ideally up to 2020. Applicants are advised to use the European 5 for this purpose. The proposal Commission‟s Marco Polo modal shift calculator
will also provide details of the project's contribution to congestion reduction in the
ix. details on the current maritime connections between the ports involved (e.g.
sailing schedules, technical information of the vessels deployed, etc). Projections
on the expected evolution of the maritime connections between the ports involved,
backed up with evidence at the disposal of the consortium members (e.g. market
surveys, expression of interests of users, recent service upgrades or expressions of
intents to upgrade services, regional trade statistics, traffic forecasts etc)
x. an identification of socio-economic cohesion and accessibility benefits. Examples
of such benefits could include: improved frequency of services, enhanced route
options, time and cost savings.
xi. a socio-economic cost-benefit analysis and environmental impact analysis of the
project activities. It is strongly recommended that applicants undertake the socio-
economic cost-benefit analysis according to the HEATCO methodology and to the 6handbook on external cost estimation.
xii. a statement, with supporting evidence, why the scheme will not distort the existing
market in adjacent or competing corridors and/or ports. The proposal should also
describe the scheme's wider benefits, beyond those that will accrue to the
consortium members, and the extent to which it adds value to TEN-T programme.
xiii. a full description of the proposed management structure of the project. Complete
details of all project partners including their role within the project should be
included. Project partners should indicate their support for the proposal by means
of a letter of commitment. Letters of support from potential users of the project
proposal should be included with the bid, even from those potential users that do
not request TEN-T funding.
Even though some of the above requested information may not fully comply with the specific nature of study or pilot action proposals, please try to be as complete as possible. The European Commission will evaluate studies and pilot actions against the
5 See http://ec.europa.eu/transport/marcopolo/home/home_en.htm
Please verify you use the latest version of the Marco Polo calculator.
6 See http://heatco.ier.uni-stuttgart.de/ and
More tools for the assessment of the impact of a Motorways of the Sea projects can be found on http://www.vsl.tu-harburg.de/stratmos
same four general criteria that are used for all TEN-T projects i.e. relevance, maturity, impact and quality.
What are the criteria that have to be met?
The evaluation criteria and a copy of the checklist used by the North Sea region administrations are set out in Annex II.
When and where should bids be submitted to?
Project proposals can be submitted to the Member States concerned at any time. However, the Member States concerned need approximately three months for internal evaluation of the proposals, meaning a project proposal aiming at submission with Member State support to the European call expected for April should be submitted latest on 31st January of the same year.
Project proposals should be submitted in hard copy and on CD-ROM to the relevant Member States (i.e. each Member State that the bid relates to) at the addresses listed in the table at Annex III. The envelopes should be clearly marked: „Project Proposal
for Motorways of the North Sea‟.
What happens then?
The proposals will be evaluated jointly by these ministries and authorities, based on evaluation criteria described in Annex II. The project proposals that are approved by
the relevant Member States will receive the necessary support from the respective governments, and will be presented by the relevant Member States to the European Commission for TEN-T financing. This does not exclude, where appropriate, application for other EU or Member State financial instruments.
The selection by Member States does not bind the European Commission in its evaluation.
The European calls for submission of Motorways of the Sea project proposals are expected to be published annually in December.
What potential sources of funding are available?
The following instruments are potential sources of financial investment support for Motorways of the Seas projects:
；;TEN-T financing: The TEN-T programme can provide financial support for
infrastructure and facilities for Motorways of the Sea actions (co-financed up to 20%, 30% for cross-border sections) and can also provide start-up aid (limited to 2 years) and support for preparatory studies (co-financed up to 50%), through the multi-annual programme.
；;Marco Polo II programme: The Marco Polo II programme can provide financial
support for Motorways of the Sea services, including expenses on preparatory measures and ancillary infrastructure, co-financed up to 35% of total eligible costs. ;
& Cohesion Funds: A number of the operational programmes ；;Structural Funds
for territorial co-operation (Interreg) provide explicitly for support for the Motorways of the Sea.
；;EIB Support: The European Investment Bank can provide support for Motorways of the Sea either through senior debt financing or through the Loan Guarantee instrument for TEN-T projects created jointly with the Commission. ;
；;National State Aid: member states may compliment the existing funding
instruments with national state aid, taking into account the relevant community guidelines for state aid.
Annex IV gives a comprehensive overview of all possible funding instruments for Motorways of the Sea. It is advisable to consider carefully what instruments or combination of instruments are most relevant to your project idea.
Please check the website of the Motorways of the Sea One Stop Help Desk for the latest information on the funding possibilities for Motorways of the Sea projects. http://www.mos-helpdesk.eu/
Who are the contacts in case of enquiries?
They are listed in the following table.
Flemish Ministry of Mobility and Public Works, Ministry of Transport, Public Works and Water
Mr. Pim Bonne The Netherlands Tel. +32 2 553 62 51, Mr. Jan Bron Dik firstname.lastname@example.org Tel. +31 70 351 1448
Federal Public Service Mobility and Transport, Department for Transport, Belgium United Kingdom Mr. Philippe Colpaert Mrs. Fran Queen Tel. +32 2 277 35 04 Tel. +44 20 7944 2774 email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org
Federal Ministry of Transport, Building and Danish Ministry of Transport, Urban Affairs, Denmark
Germany Mr. Søren Clausen Mrs. Bettina Meenke Tel. +45 33 92 43 87 Tel. +49 228 300 4615 email@example.com
Swedish Maritime Administration, Norwegian Coastal Administration, Sweden Norway
Mr. Magnus Sundström Mr. Thor Vartdal Tel. +46 11 19 12 71 Tel. +47 37 01 97 00 firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com
Ministry of Ecology, Energy, Sustainable Irish Maritime Development Office, Development and Sea, Ireland
France Mr. Brian Richardson Mrs. Christine Lavarde Tel: +353 1 476 6500 Tel. +33 1 40 81 84 34 firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com
In addition to the Member State contact points, you can also address your enquiries to
the European Motorways of the Sea One Stop Help Desk via following e-mail address
ANNEX 1: Article 12a of the TEN-T guidelines
Motorways of the sea
1. The trans-European network of motorways of the sea is intended to concentrate flows of freight on sea-based logistical routes in such a way as to improve existing maritime links or to establish new viable, regular and frequent maritime links for the transport of goods between Member States so as to reduce road congestion and/or improve access to peripheral and island regions and States. Motorways of the sea should not exclude the combined transport of persons and goods, provided that freight is predominant.
2. The trans-European network of motorways of the sea shall consist of facilities and infrastructure concerning at least two ports in two different Member States. The facilities and infrastructure shall include elements, in at least one Member State, such as the port facilities, electronic logistics management systems, safety and security and administrative and customs procedures, as well as infrastructure for direct land and sea access, including ways of ensuring year-round navigability, in particular the availability of facilities for dredging and icebreakers for winter access. 3. Waterways or canals, as identified in Annex I, which link two European motorways of the sea, or two sections thereof, and make a substantial contribution to shortening sea routes, increasing efficiency and saving shipping time shall form part of the trans-European network of motorways of the sea.
4. The projects of common interest of the trans-European network of motorways of the sea shall be proposed by at least two Member States and shall be geared to actual needs. The projects proposed shall in general involve both the public and private sectors in accordance with procedures which, before aid granted from the national budgets can be supplemented, if necessary, by aid from the Community, provide for a tendering process in one of the following forms:
(a) a public call for tenders organised jointly by the Member States concerned, intended to establish new links from the category A port, as defined in Article 12(2), which they select in advance within each sea area, as referred to in project No 21 in Annex III;
(b) in so far as the location of the ports is comparable, a public call for tenders organised jointly by the Member States concerned and targeting consortia bringing together at least shipping companies and ports located in one of the sea areas, as referred to in project No 21 in Annex III.
5. The projects of common interest of the trans-European network of motorways of the sea:
– shall focus on the facilities and infrastructure which make up the network of motorways of the sea,
– may include, without prejudice to Articles 87 and 88 of the Treaty, start-up aid if, as a result of the tendering process referred to in paragraph 4, public support is deemed necessary for the financial viability of the project. Start-up aid shall be limited to two years and shall be granted only in support of duly justified capital costs. The aid may