The statement and wishes are based on a review of the EU maritime transport policy that has recently been submitted. The review covers the first part of the policy framework, which is to be renewed in 2018. The coalition of organizations and stakeholders behind the statement concerning the review of EU maritime policy are: ECSA (European Community Shipowners Associations), ECASBA (European Community Association of Ship Brokers and Agents), CLIA (Cruise Lines International Association), ETA (European Tugowners Association), EuDA (European Dredging Association), Interferry and WSC (World Shipping Council). The 7 points that are to be considered as part of a common EU policy put forward by the marine coalition are summarized below.

1: Standard of rules affirmation. The coalition requires predictable, intentional tax laws to strengthen the marine industry’s competitiveness and to secure the continued strengthening of the European economy and society by ways of maritime transport - instead of creating unfair competition.

2: The coalition wants a “reevaluation of the EU discourse regarding the sustainability of the industry.” As such the wish is for a harmonization of Sox, NOx and CO2 requirements in international and EU waters.

3: The coalition sees it as imperative that the Shipping industry is branded and made more attractive with regards to attracting well educated people to the industry.

4: Shipping should be made more attractive for the customers. By this is meant a levitating of the administrative burdens and tax challenges currently present in Inter EU markets.

5: The coalition wishes the EU to continue working on international coorperations, so that the status of being an economic heavy weight may be retained.

6: In terms of port activities, the coalition seeks better reception conditions in EU ports – and an increased attention towards the cruise industry.

7: The last point goes to a far more widespread and global challenge, illegal immigration. While the industry will always maintain the discourse of aiding anyone in danger at sea, the commercial carriers are not equipped to handle vast amount of refugees and the crew is not educated to handle such humanitarian matters. As such the plea highlights that it is not the role of the shipping industry to solve world problems which are the responsibility of international institutions or governments.

Read the full article at shippingwatch. NB: The article is in Danish.

It will be interesting to see which/if any points will be incorporated into the EU maritime transport policy of 2018. The question is whether the continued tightening of Sox, NOx and CO2 requirements, and the wish to harmonize with international standards could speed up the process of international emission reductions or whether it will indeed slow the emissions reduction down?