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The Italian national transport association, Associazione Trasporti (ASSTRA) and UITP renewed their partnership agreement in an online session earlier this year. After the COVID-19 pandemic reiterated the value of UITP, the association expressed its ambition to intensify its involvement.
“Our national and local public transport systems were the first ones in Europe to be hit by the COVID-19 pandemic”, said ASSTRA president Andrea Gibelli during the signing of the agreement. “The support and information provided by UITP allowed us to improve the reputation of public transport during these times.”
Our national and local public transport systems were the first ones in Europe to be hit by the COVID-19 pandemic. We are really proud to have brought the experience of all ASSTRA members forward to fight against the pandemic.
The agreement between ASSTRA and UITP has been in place for over 15 years and provides a unique model for cooperation. Through it, not only ASSTRA, but all of its nearly 150 members reap the benefits of UITP membership.
This meant that as the COVID-19 pandemic spread throughout Europe in early 2020, the entire UITP community could learn from those early experiences in Italy. For example through sharing data, case studies and best practices. Andrea Gibelli: “We are really proud to have brought the experience of all ASSTRA members forward to fight against the pandemic.”
Mohamed Mezghani, UITP Secretary General* expressed his hope that the cooperation between UITP and ASSTRA could serve as a model for other partnerships between UITP and other associations in the future. “This crisis made clear how important these close relationships actually are.”
With 146 members, ASSTRA has a 70% share of Italy’s Urban and suburban transport market. It represents local public transport companies in Italy, from bus and rail operator to cableways and lagoon and lake shipping.
As a national association, ASSTRA raises awareness on the environmental, social and economic benefits of the transport sector and how the industry helps build sustainable and liveable cities. It also provides members assistance on various topics like innovation and works actively on standardisation within the industry.
Collaborations with other recognisable voices are key to the work of UITP to bring together all public transport stakeholders and sustainable transport modes. They also help bring together people to exchange ideas, find solutions and forge partnerships. As a global association, it’s important to develop international ties and by expanding our existing relationship with ASSTRA, we continue to grow in Europe.
*Acting on behalf of Mohamed Mezghani SARL