The Danube – a stream of energy: This was the motto of the two-day Danube Business Talks 2018, organised by the ENERGY BARGE partners Port of Vienna and viadonau in Vienna. The ENERGY BARGE project is coordinated by FNR.
After the first day full of political topics on the role of the Danube as a logistical and touristic axis in Europe, a joint declaration of the European Barge Union, European Skippers Organisation, Pro Danube International and Pro Danube Austria was handed over to Austria’s Minister of Transport. Austria is currently having the chair at the EU transport ministers round due to the Austrian EU presidency. A joint dinner cruise closed the first day.
The second day focussed on new business relations. In four in-depth speeches, the companies Agrana, Münzer, Bulmarket and Port of Rotterdam presented their biobased energy businesses as well as their logistics systems. The key message was: if the Paris agreement and European climate goals are taken seriously, bioenergy and biobased economy will have to play a decisive role. To this end, political actions such as a CO2 tax could be suitable measures.
For bigger processing sites, functioning logistics are of predominant importance. For Agrana, Münzer and Bulmarket, the Danube already is an important logistics backbone for feedstock and for products. But only if the Danube logistics services are accessible all year round, the supply can be guaranteed. Here, clear challenges arise. After a brief panel round, the audience moved to the ENERGY BARGE business-to-business talks. Organised in advance via an online tool, actors along the supply chains could book brief 15-minute business dates with potential partners of interest to facilitate first contacts.
The next ENERGY BARGE business-to-business meeting will take place in Bratislava, Slovakia, on 22 November 2018. More information will follow soon.