The methodology is based on a focused comparison between the intra-community transport policy in the EU and Mercosul and involves three stages: a macro-comparison, a micro-comparison and a test of functionality. The macro-comparison involves a survey of community legislation; the role of community institutions and the political evolution of both integration systems. The micro-comparison is centred in the transport sector and include: legal, institutional and administrative comparison. Finally, a test of functionality tries to visualise the best solutions for road, rail, inland waterways and maritime transport carried in the EU and how these were and should be in Mercosul, in order not to repeat the same mistakes in the past and to increase the competitiveness in other integrated freight transport markets.
In 1999, a field trip to South America was made to make some interviews. The interviews were the complement to the European work done earlier in the research. The interviews were undertaken with practitioners considered to be influential and well-informed people in organisations drawn from the representative countries of Mercosul. The relevant organisations included ministries of transport and foreign affairs, federation of transport operators and industries, trade unions and syndicates of drivers. The next task will be centred on the presentation, analysis and interpretation from the data collected. First, the whole data collected will be summarised, coded and categorised. Furthermore, the assembled information will be presented in matrices for subsequent analysis. Moreover, conclusions will be made and some recommendations will be presented for other regional trade areas.
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