Trieste Regional Council Unanimously Approves Motion on Port Development

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Trieste from Porto Vecchio
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by EH

– In a rare display of unanimity, the Trieste Regional Council has approved a motion aimed at propelling forward the development of the Port of Trieste. Presented by leaders from across the political spectrum, the motion underscores the importance of fully implementing the legal framework governing the port’s free zones, seen as pivotal for economic growth and potentially instrumental in resolving ongoing disputes.

The motion, backed by all members of the Legislative Assembly, emphasizes recent moves by multinational corporations, notably Finland’s Wartsila and the emerging interest of Msc in the region’s infrastructure and workforce. Msc’s commitment, however, hinges on the comprehensive implementation of free zone regulations, prompting the company to urge the national Government to extend international free zone status to Trieste’s port, including the adjacent Bagnoli della Rosandra area, to facilitate smoother trade operations.

Today’s approved document also references past legislative efforts, including a motion from the previous assembly in September 2020, as well as resolutions from the Senate’s XIV Permanent Commission and responses from the European Commission. These interactions culminated in a parliamentary mandate in December 2022, compelling the national Executive to formally petition the European Commission for recognition and support of Trieste’s free zone status.

Speaking in the Council chamber, the Majority leader stressed the bipartisan consensus surrounding the motion, reflecting a long-standing commitment to the region’s economic prosperity. He highlighted the broader significance of free zone recognition, not only for the capital but for the entire Friuli Venezia Giulia region, suggesting its potential as a magnet for diverse businesses. Challenges to free zone implementation, he noted, primarily stem from bureaucratic hurdles rather than political opposition.

The Governor of Friuli Venezia Giulia also weighed in, commending the motion’s objectives and signaling intentions to escalate the matter to the national level. He underscored the historical precedence of Trieste’s free zone, enshrined in the 1947 peace treaty and recognized by the European Union, positioning it as an integral aspect of international law that transcends the need for additional approval.

The Regional Council’s unanimous endorsement marks a significant step forward in Trieste’s quest for economic revitalization, setting the stage for potential collaboration between regional and national authorities to unlock the port’s full potential and foster sustained growth in the wider region.

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Edward Hunt
Edward is a defence consultant working independently for various companies and governments. He has lived in Trieste since 2017 after moving with his family from London. Currently he also writes articles for various aerospace industry magazines, works with flight simulator game developers and corrects erroneous opinions in the FT comments sections like a Boss.

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