European Affairs

Gotthardbasistunnel. Photo/Foto: Pechristener/Wikipedia.

Gotthard Tunnel

Since 1990, Switzerland has made efforts to ensure the development of the European transport system and the integration of the European high-speed rail network through the construction of the Gotthard Base Tunnel (Gotthardbasistunnel).

The Gotthard tunnel is an important construction on the European corridor Rotterdam-Milan-Genoa. The new freight line from Rotterdam to the Dutch-German border is another relevant construction. However, Germany and Italy failed to build the promised projects.

The opening of the Gotthard Tunnel (1 June 2016) has a practical European meaning and symbolic value. The 15 kilometres Ceneri base tunnel in Italy and the connection between Karlsruhe and Basel are lacking. The extension of the so-called Betuwe line in the Netherlands to Germany shares the same fate because Germany is protecting the port of Hamburg.

The Gotthard Tunnel is also an important event for the European Union. A small country in the middle of Europe has completed this project without corruption, without EU-money, and a year ahead of schedule.