Rotterdam Port CEO "preparing for the worst" with Brexit
The Port of Rotterdam is bracing for a British exit from the European Union without any deal on customs, and looking at measures such as hiring 100 extra customs agents and dozens of fresh produce inspectors. CEO Allard Castelein said he had had two meetings in the past week with "policy makers, the cabinet, the government and supporting officials about the consequences" of a so-called "hard" Brexit, which would move Britain away from EU rules. "If you have 407 days left, then you don't have time to embrace hypotheses that it will turn out pretty good in the end," he told reporters.
EU Adopts New Arctic Policy
The High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and the European Commission have adopted a policy proposal that will guide the actions of the European Union in the Arctic region. The European Union will step up its existing action and engagement in the region with 39 actions focusing on climate change, environmental protection, sustainable development and international cooperation. The particular importance of research, science and innovation is reflected across these priority areas.
Singapore to Host Ship Recycling Summit
ACI’s Ship Recycling Summit will take place October 2014 in Singapore, allowing shipowners, brokers, cash buyers, steel merchants and ship breaking yards to come together in an informal setting to discuss the challenges that they each face in meeting the Hong Kong convention requirements and the challenges brought about by new EU regulation. This unique forum also focuses on the latest issues affecting the industry such as a global push for more environmentally sound ship breaking and recycling. •Turkey: Europe’s Answer to Green Ship Recycling?
Spain Approves Port Reform Proposal
Spain's lower house of parliament narrowly passed a long-delayed reform of port operations on Thursday, bringing regulation closer to that of the European Union though the overhaul has been slammed by unions which have threatened widespread strikes. The decree, which was rejected the first time it was given to legislators in March, aims to liberalise hiring in a sector strictly controlled by the unions and comes after months of fines by the EU for not adhering to European regulation. (Reporting by Paul Day, Editing by Sarah White)
Croatia to Speed up Building of LNG Terminal in Adriatic
Croatia will pass a special law to speed up the construction of a liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal in the northern Adriatic, Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic said on Thursday. Croatia produces more than half of its gas consumption, some 2.5 billion cubic metres (bcm) a year. Once the LNG terminal is built it hopes to be able to supply both its own market as well as central and eastern European countries. "Our aim (is) to pass a special law as a key message that it is a strategic project for us.
EU Asks UN for Help with Mediterranean Migrant Crisis
The European Union seeks U.N. authorization to deploy military force in the Mediterranean to stop migrant smugglers. EU foreign policy Chief Federica Mogherini has pleaded for UN help to dismantle criminal groups smuggling migrants into the European Union. According to AFP, Mogherini addressed the UN Security Council as it prepares to endorse a controversial European Union plan aimed at stemming a record tide of refugees making the perilous journey across the Mediterranean. She said her first priority is to save lives and prevent further loss of lives at sea.
Maersk Taps into Asian Growth with New Route
As Europe’s economic slowdown reshapes global trade patterns, Maersk Line taps into Asian growth by starting a new direct route to South Korea. A.P. Moeller-Maersk A/S began shipping from the port of Gothenburg, Scandinavia’s largest, to Busan, the world’s fifth-busiest port. The route will support growing Asian demand for European imports almost two years after Korea and the European Union signed a free-trade agreement, reports Bloomberg. Maersk estimates trade to Asia’s growth economies will increase this year as shipments to crisis-stricken Europe decline. Source: Bloomberg
Shippers call for EU to Stop Over Regulation
The UK’s £10bn shipping industry has called the push toward closer union in Europe “distracting” and told the European Commission (EC) to stop interfering with the sector’s globally produced regulations. This is the gist of study on the impact UK’s shipping industry published by UK Chamber of Shipping. The study said that rules devised on a global scale helped to create a level playing field among competing firms. The study is designed to help the Prime Minister in determining…
Obama says to Anticipate Refugee Problems for Decades
Citing the migrant crisis in the European Union, U.S. President Barack Obama said on Friday that the world should expect refugee problems for decades. Speaking at a town hall event with U.S. military members, Obama said military conflicts and climate change will contribute to refugee crises. (Reporting by Julia Edwards; Editing by Sandra Maler)
EU NAVFOR Develops Communication Technology
The British Royal Navy-led EU NAVFOR, the European Union’s first naval task force assembled to protect international shipping in the waters off Somalia, has partnered with IT service company Polymorph to develop a collaboration tool for its vessels. The tool will be designed to coordinate anti-piracy operations off the Somali coast and protect United Nations World Food Program (WFP) vessels delivering food to the region. The system will feature a single framework for communication and document exchange.
Piracy in Somali Basin Surges
According to a May 14 report from the Xinhua News Agency, The European Union (EU) naval force protecting shipping off Somalia said that the number of pirate ships operating between the Seychelles and the Somali coast has skyrocketed in the last three months. The EU force, along with NATO and others, has interrupted and dismantled over 60 pirate groups and processed roughly 400 suspected pirates in the last 12 weeks alone -- three times the number of piracy groups recorded last year according to an EU NAVFOR official. (Source: Xinhua News Agency)
EU Ministers Agree on TEN-T
The EU transport ministers convened at the first day of the TEN-T Days in the Van Nelle Factory in Rotterdam. They discussed the process of implementing the Trans-European Transport Network: new challenges and opportunities, new technologies and mobility patterns for passengers, as well as digitalization and automation of freight transport. EU Commissioner for Transport Violeta Bulc said, "Only days after we allocated €6.7 billion to priority projects as part of the Connecting Europe Facility, the TEN-T Days offer another opportunity to mobilise funding for transport investments.
US, EU, China Maritime Reps Meet in Brussels
Maritime summit between European Union, U.S. Representatives from the maritime regulatory authorities of the European Union, the People’s Republic of China and the United States met today in Brussels to discuss antitrust and regulatory issues in maritime transport, confirming a renewed intention to cooperate on these matters. Hosted by the European Commission's Directorate-General for Competition, this was the second official meeting between the three authorities, following the first maritime regulatory summit that took place in Washington in December 2013.
U.S. Ready to Help Hungary Build Energy Independence
The United States is willing to help Hungary and other European countries build energy infrastructure to reduce its dependence on Russian oil and gas, U.S. Chargé d'Affaires in Budapest André Goodfriend has told Nepszava newspaper. "Relying on Russian sources threatens energy independence," Goodfriend told Nepszava in an interview published on Saturday. Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban has drawn criticism from Western governments for trying to secure supplies of energy and trade for Hungary by doing deals with Moscow.
Matiss Backs European Shipping Week
The Presidency of the Council of the European Union has granted official patronage to the forthcoming European Shipping Week (ESW) which will be held in Brussels during March 2‐6, 2015. This support joins the European Parliament’s official patronage by its President, Martin Schulz, and that of the European Commission. In a letter to Patrick Verhoeven, Secretary General of the European Community Shipowners’ Associations (ECSA), Anrijs Matiss, Latvian Minister of Transport, gave his full support to the week-long event.
EU Leads the Way with Ambitious Action for Cleaner and Safer Seas
At the ongoing EU-hosted Our Ocean conference in Malta (5-6 October), the European Union has committed to 36 tangible actions to foster healthier, cleaner, safer and more secure seas. Amounting to over €550 million and involving activities worldwide, the announcements underline the EU's determination to improve the situation of the seas and send a positive signal of encouragement to the rest of the world – governments and private sector alike - to step up and tackle the growing ocean challenges…
Post-Brexit: UK Chamber Calls for ‘Free Trade Commission’
The UK Chamber of Shipping remained neutral on the question of the UK’s membership of the EU but we recognise the decision of the British people. The chamber has always argued that the shipping industry is resilient by its nature. Shipping moves 95% of the UK’s international trade and we don’t see that changing. We may now be beginning the process of leaving the European Union, but we are still an island nation that has to make its way in the world through buying and selling, and the shipping industry is here for that very purpose. What we need now are cool heads.
New European Regs on Ship Recycling
The new European Regulation on ship recycling (Regulation (EU) No 1257/2013) was published on December 10, 2013 in the Official Journal of the European Union and it will enter into force on December 30, 2013. In view of the international importance of the new Regulation GMS followed very closely and contributed advice towards its development. It is paramount that the implementation of the new Regulation by the European Commission in the next two years will be guided by realism and a clear understanding of the dynamics of the industry…
Drydocks World Conforms to FPC under EU Regulation
Drydocks World, the international service provider to the shipping, offshore, oil, gas and energy sectors has successfully been certified to European Standards EN 1090 – 1 and EN 1090-2. The certification program is part of the European Union’s Construction Products Regulation CPR 305/2011. Drydocks World’s main yard activities undertaken in its facility are found to be complying with Factory Production Control (FPC) requirements by the auditing body. The scope of the certification includes Corrosion Protected Load Bearing Steel Structures…
Somali Relief Ship Escorted by EUNAVFOR Warships
Operation Atalanta (EU NAVFOR) provided protection to MV Gigante, a ship chartered for AMISOM (African Union Mission in Somalia) to bring supplies to the African Union peacekeeping force based in Mogadishu. The German frigate Bremen and the French frigate Guépratte took turns to carry out this mission, from the south Red Sea to Mogadishu. As with the World Food Programme vessels, protecting logistics for AMISOM is part of the mandated tasks of the EU Naval Force - Operation Atalanta and is part of the Comprehensive Approach of the European Union in the fight against piracy.
Rotterdam Integrates Safety Research with LNG Training Facility
The Dutch company Falck Risc is becoming the number one expert on LNG safety in Europe. Together with the Unified Fire Department, Falck Risc will draw up guidelines and recommendations for emergency response services in dealing with Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG). This study is part of the LNG Masterplan Rhine-Main Danube and will be ready at the end of this year. As coordinator for the Rhine Corridor in this European project, Port of Rotterdam Authority is in charge of this research project by Falck Risc.
Maritime Labour Standards – EU Commission Adopts New Proposals
Two new proposals adopted by the European Commission are set to bring the European Union into line with enforcements and compliance rules foreseen by the Maritime Labour Convention (MLC) 2006. The MLC provides the world’s more than 1.2 million seafarers with rights and protection at work. The proposals for two new directives clarify flag and port states’ responsibilities to ensure that maritime labour standards on board ships calling at EU ports comply with the provisions of the MLC.
European Dockworkers to Hold Two-hour Strike
The International Dockworkers Council (IDC) has called a Europe-wide port stoppage in support of the conflict faced by Spanish dockers and in opposition to the policies of the European Commission (EC). Once the conflict in Spain has been resolved, the IDC said it expects the EC to reconvene the European Commission Sectorial Social Dialogue Committee, which the IDC will re-join in order to promote new changes. The IDC said it demands that International Labour Organization (ILO) Conventions 137 and 152 be ratified and complied with by all member states of the European Union.
Green Signal for Iranian Tankers in European Ports
The Mehr News Agency reports that the British Lloyd's Register Group has canceled one sanction against Iran’s oil industry by issuing certificates for commute of Iranian oil tankers to the ports and oil terminals of European Union. The managing director of National Iranian Tanker Company (NITC) Ali Akbar Safaei stated about the official removal of the first sanction on Iran’s oil industry in the field of marine transport of crude oil and petroleum products. “Iranian tankers will now travel under the license of British Lloyds international classification institution,”he said.
IMO Seeks Hosts for Maritime Technology Centers
An ambitious project to help mitigate the harmful effects of climate change has been kick-started by IMO with a call for formal expressions of interest to host centres to promote cooperation in the field of maritime technology. The joint IMO – European Union project, entitled “Capacity Building for Climate Change Mitigation in the Maritime Shipping Industry” will see five Maritime Technology Cooperation Centers (MTCCs) established, one in each of five target regions – Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, Latin America and the Pacific – to form a global network.
Maersk Eyes Greek Ports
APM Terminals, part of A.P. Moller-Maersk, said it is interested in buying into the Greek ports Piraeus and Thessaloniki, slated for privatization if a new bailout deal is agreed between Athens and the European Union, reports Reuters. Maersk will participate in the bidding process for two of the largest Greek ports – Piraeus and Thessaloniki – after the country’s Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras brought the sale of the ports on the table in today’s bailout proposal, Bloomberg reports.