Second Transport Hemispheric Summit
Joint Ministerial Statement

(Santiago, Chile, April 10-12, 1996)

We the Ministers Responsible for Transportation in the Americas meet again in order to support the commitments assumed at the 1994 Summit of the Americas, to explore joint solutions for the transportation problems in the region, and to establish the bases for a more dynamic and effective cooperation among our countries.


  1. We the Ministers Responsible for Transportation are aware of the important role that an efficient system plays in international trade and economic integration and consequently, in the economic growth and social welfare of the region.

  2. We acknowledge that the transportation systems of member States are at different stages of development.  Furthermore, we recognize the critical need to collaborate in order to promote the development of the region's transportation system.

  3. We appreciate the previous efforts directed to the economic integration of the Americas, the construction of a subcontinental transportation system and to the harmonization of standards and transportation policies.  This experience is the starting point for the current efforts aimed at achieving a more integrated continental transportation system.

  4. We consider that the decision taken at the Summit of the Americas ["the Miami Summit"] to move toward a Free Trade Area in the region will require broad and comprehensive changes in the transportation system in the Americas.  the overall task in to ensure that the transportation system will support trade, economic integration and tourism in the region as well as trade with other regions of the world.


With this in mind, we intend to maintain an ongoing dialogue, to foster the exchange of ideas on subjects of mutual interest and to work towards the overall objective of:

  1. Promoting market-oriented, integrated, financially viable and environmentally sustainable transportation systems and services, as well as providing safe, efficient and reliable passenger and cargo services that foster the economic growth and development of our countries.


In order to achieve this objective, we the Ministers will be guided by the following principles in our joint efforts:

  1. To eliminate barriers to investment in transportation enterprises and the delivery of transportation services.

  2. To work together in developing qualified personnel, the exchange of technology, and, investment in infrastructure and transportation services.

  3. To create favorable conditions for private sector participation in the construction of infrastructure and the operation of transportation services.

  4. To achieve a more competitive environment for transportation services in the region.

  5. To negotiate regional agreements on transportation matters of common interest.


Based on the foregoing principles, we the Ministers Responsible for Transportation establish the following priorities:

  1. To encourage sound and adequate financing for transportation projects, the identification of alternative financing mechanisms, the exchange of experiences and the professional evaluation of investment projects.

  2. To harmonize regulations for equipment, operations and transportation safety in order to increase efficiency and safety of the system and, consequently, to facilitate trade.

  3. To develop effective mechanisms to exchange information concerning transportation technologies applicable to the management and operation of transportation systems in the region.

  4. To adopt comprehensive measures to enhance transportation safety including standards for equipment, infrastructure and operations.

  5. To promote agreements for personnel training programs especially in the use of new technologies.

  6. To lay the groundwork of multimodal transportation.

  7. To promote transportation studies research and analysis in the region.

  8. To develop appropriate organizational and institutional arrangements to implement the Western Hemisphere Transport Initiative.

  9. To promote measures that improve the environment and heath-related performance of transportation systems and services.


Based on the foregoing Principles and Priorities, we the Ministers Responsible for Transportation in the Americas confirm our commitment to cooperate to address issues of mutual interest.  In that regard, we endorse the following Plan of Action:

  1. To establish a Provisional Organization of transport ministries in the Western Hemisphere to improve transportation system safety, efficiency, financial viability, and environmental friendliness.  The Provisional Organization, and any successor organization, is to be simple, flexible, and action oriented.

  2. An Executive Committee reporting to the Ministers Responsible for Transportation in the Americas will oversee the policy and administrative details of the provisional organization and will:

    1. Recommend a structure for continuing cooperation among the transport ministries of the region.

    2. Prepare a profile of the region's transportation systems and services [please see ECLAC's study] ; and

    3. Oversee preparations for future meetings of transport ministers.

  3. To begin work on specific projects, we agree to create three ad hoc Working Groups:

    1. The Working Group on Information Dissemination and Training will:

      • Recommend steps necessary to expand the Pan American Institute of Highways' Charter to include technology transfer and cooperation for all modes;

      • Identify priority training needs in the region and match them with training opportunities offered by government, academic, and private entities; and

      • Coordinate with civil aviation authorities to support the Latin American and Caribbean Aviation Conference scheduled for September 1996.

    2. The Working Group on Harmonization and facilitation will:

      • Recommend steps that can be taken in the short to medium term to make land transportation standards more compatible throughout the region;

      • Review efforts to improve the quality, reliability, and compatibility of air navigation systems in the region; and

      • Develop a plan for improving compliance with International Maritime Organization Standards and recommended Practices. [IMO]

    3. The Working Group on Business-Government Cooperation will:

      • Organize a conference on innovative methods of financing transportation systems and services, to include transport and finance representatives of national and local governments, the investment banking community, multilateral lending institutions, the private sector, and

      • Recommend methods for ensuring continued private sector interest and participation in the Provisional Organization's work and the region's transportation policy implementation process.

  4. To the maximum extent possible, all aspects of the Provisional Organization's work will be undertaken in collaboration with the private sector, public interest groups, and transport-related international organizations.

  5. The Executive Committee will report on progress on all action items by October 15, 1996.

  6. We agree that this Summit of Transportation Ministers has promoted greater mutual understanding of critical transport issues facing the region and we are pleased that we have identified a set of common principles and priorities, and have taken steps to translate that into a meaningful Plan of Action.  We look forward to continuing cooperation among the Transport Ministers Responsible for Transportation in the Western Hemisphere.

Santiago, Chile, April 1996.