Impact of Joining the European Union on the Development of Transport Policy in the Republic of Latvia

Juris Kanels

In: Kabashkin I., Yatskiv I., Prentkovskis O. (eds) Reliability and Statistics in Transportation and Communication. RelStat 2018. Lecture Notes in Networks and Systems, vol 68. Springer, Cham
DOI: 10.1007/978-3-030-12450-2_60
: Public administration, Integration in the EU, Impact assessment, Transport policy 

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Over the past 25 years Latvia has rapidly evolved into a modern European state. Dramatic changes in the political and economic system of Latvia also accompanied the reforms in the field of public administration. Public administration reforms started in 1990 and the current planning period (2014–2020) is already the fourth most significant stage in the development of public administration policy. However, in the author’s opinion the greatest influence on the development of the state administration system was left to the process of preparation for Latvia’s accession to the European Union and becoming a member of the EU.

Transport is one of the central elements of the process of European integration, which helps to create an internal market conducive to employment and economic growth. Transport policy is one of the common policies of the European Union that has existed since the beginnings of the EU, as it was considered essential to guarantee three of the four freedoms of the common market set out in the Treaty of Rome in 1957—the freedom of movement of people, services and goods.

There is no doubt that also Latvia’s transport sector has evolved as a member of the European Union. The implementation of the EU legislation, technical, social and environmental standards has taken place, and very significant investments have been made for infrastructure development.

At the same time, it is difficult to find any comprehensive report on the particular impact of accession to the EU on the Latvian transport sector and the consequences of this accession. Therefore the author made a research trying to answer following questions: What changes in the improvement of the normative base and the development of infrastructure have taken place in the transport sector of the Republic of Latvia from 1999 to 2016? How has the transport policy changed in the time after Latvia’s accession to the European Union? What effects of economic, social and environmental impact in the transport sector have caused Latvia’s accession to the European Union?

Current paper is a short summary of this research.