The Working Group on Transport and Logistics is currently in process of merging the national (BEATA) and the regional (RWGTL) working groups.
The need for co-operation on transport issues between the countries of the Barents Region was raised at the third Pan-European Transport Conference in Helsinki in 1997 and the Barents Region was subsequently introduced into the EU transport co-operation as a Transport Area.
The Steering Committee for the Barents Euro-Arctic Transport Area (BEATA) co-operation was established and guidelines for its work drawn up at a meeting in Copenhagen in May 1998 between the Ministers for Transport from Finland, Norway, Russia and Sweden and representatives from the European Commission.
The main aim is to strengthen co-operation in order to create an efficient transport system in the Barents Region that integrates the different means of transport.
The co-operation includes border crossing points, customs co-operation, maintenance and reconstruction as well as new projects to improve the infrastructure.
The chairmanship rotates between the members on a two-year basis. Currently the Finnish Ministry of Transport and Communication is chairing this Working Group.
During the Swedish Chairmanship at BEATA in 2017-2019, the Joint Barents Transport Plan (JBTP) was updated and presented in Autumn 2019 (see the links to the documents below).
The Norwegian Chairmanship of BEATA has presented the BEATA Work Programme 2020-2021 with emphasis on ITS and digitalization, Road Corridor development, Sustainability and Traffic Safety in good dialogue with the NDPTL, the Regional Working Group on Transport and Logistics, and other relevant Barents Working Groups, including Tourism.
In the Ministerial Meeting, held digitally in Autumn 2021, the Ministers of Transport supported the initiative from the BEAC Committee of Senior Officials to optimize the current organization of the working groups on transport aiming for one joint group mirroring the needs from both national and regional level.