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From beach to port

Opinió | 19/01/2009

How to position Catalonia in the global first division

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The synergies, connectivity, intermodality are essential. The transport systems should be complementary and be well interwoven. Only thus will it be possible to combine the natural attraction with the logistics and the productive economy, and the country will be able to go beyond the phase of beaches, parties and good climate to become the main threshold of southern Europe.

The economist Ramon Tremosa offers us a summary of the articles that have been appearing on, tackling the infrastructures of Catalonia from different spheres. These contributions as a whole, according to Tremosa, offer some clues on what should be done to position the country’s transport network in the global first division of the 21st century.

The first recipe would consist of taking advantage of the strong points. First, to secure the central position on the Mediterranean axis and the capacity to act as a European gateway in the exchange with emerging zones such as Asia. The existence of ports and airports, supported by a powerful urban and productive network, is maybe the most promising aspect. Investments are certainly needed to improve the infrastructures, and although there are still important shortages, the trend points toward a notable effort over the coming years.

It is obvious that a greater commitment of the public sector, and especially the state, is convenient. The Mediterranean corridor needs to operate more smoothly, and it is urgent to solve goods transport with a European gauge track and new airport facilities. If we moreover stress efficient systems such as the suburban train network or the bicycle, we could help to decongest the local traffic. Apart from resources, it is essential to think in terms of management: clear future strategies, coordination between administrations and ending the centralist monopoly of the major infrastructures.

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