An alliance to defeat criminal networks
On January 24th, 2024, FEPORT was among the organizations invited to participate to the Ministerial launch event of the European Ports Alliance Public Private Partnership to fight organized crime and drug trafficking.
The event held in Antwerp in the impressive Port Authority building was co-organized by the EU Commission and the Belgian Presidency of the Council of the EU. It gathered Member States, port authorities, private port operators, European associations, EU Agencies (Europol, EMCDDA) and representatives from customs and law enforcement authorities.
As crucial gateways for global trade, ports are targeted by drug traffickers seeking to smuggle illicit substances across borders. The European Ports Alliance aims to play a pivotal role in combating drug trafficking, leveraging the collective resources and expertise of multiple stakeholders to enhance security measures and enforce stringent controls within port facilities.
Recognizing this threat, private port operators are certainly committed to supporting the objectives of the European Ports Alliance and share their expertise and experience.
The European Port Alliance as a Public Private Partnership will be able to defeat criminal networks if the private sector’s role in ports is recognized and if private companies and terminals are not just requested to implement decisions but are fully involved in upstream discussions.
It will be fundamental to avoid a top-down method conceived without having private port operators around the table. There are already a lot of ongoing public-private projects focusing on screening, intelligent cameras, virtual fences, port workers identity checks etc... They deserve to be known and, in some instances, to be replicated.
The role of private port operators and terminals already extends beyond mere operational functions; they serve as frontline defenders implementing robust security protocols, cooperating with customs authorities when inspectors realize their tasks at terminals. By investing in state-of-the-art surveillance systems, and training personnel in recognizing suspicious activities, private port operators have been contributing significantly to the overarching goal of disrupting drug trafficking networks and preventing the proliferation of narcotics.
However, as discussed during the Ministerial launch event of the European Ports Alliance in Antwerp last week, we are reaching a situation where criminal networks are using extreme violence, corruption and intimidation that require exceptional mobilization from public and private stakeholders in ports, national authorities, and law enforcement agencies. Seizures of cocaine in the EU have reached record levels, with more than 300 tonnes seized on an annual basis in recent years.
It will also be essential to foster international cooperation as drugs come from other regions in the world. We should also be aware that the creativity on the side of drug traffickers is huge and that it is going to be a race, a long marathon.
FEPORT members are supporters of the European Ports Alliance and are fully committed to cooperating with all parties. We look forward to continuing the work to defeat criminal networks which threaten the stability and health of our societies and the future of our children.
18.12.2023 – Council and Parliament reach a provisional agreement on TEN-T– Brussels
On the 18th of December 2023, the Spanish Presidency, on behalf of the Council of the Transport Minsters, and the European Parliament have reached a provisional agreement regarding the revised regulation on the guidelines for the development of the TEN-T network.
The provisional agreement sets clear deadlines for the completion of the 3-layer TEN-T network: the core network should be completed by 2030, the newly added extended core network by 2040 and the comprehensive network by 2050.
Overall, FEPORT believes that the provisional agreement on TEN-T is a positive step towards the creation of a more sustainable and efficient European transport network.
In particular, FEPORT welcomes the inclusion of “sustainable alternative fuels infrastructure” in the definition of basic port infrastructure as well as the flexible approach regarding the introduction of refuelling and recharging facilities for heavy-duty vehicles equipped inside the terminal or within the 3 km distance from the terminal. The draft agreement also emphasises the consolidation, maintenance and upgrading of current infrastructure, recognising the importance of optimising existing facilities in terms of safety, security, efficiency of the transport system and transport operations.
As far as rail is concerned, FEPORT advocates an equal emphasis on rail freight transport and passenger rail transport. In this context, the amendments regarding train path allocation for goods trains, speed requirements and operating standards for rail freight corridors demonstrate an ongoing commitment to improving rail infrastructure, a critical component in ensuring efficient freight transport.
However, we believe that some concerns persist. For instance, the draft agreement maintains reference to alternative fuels infrastructure but removes explicit reference to AFIR. The omission of this explicit reference may introduce ambiguity, possibly hindering a unified approach.
In the context of freight transport, addressing local bottlenecks and integrating port terminals into the governance bodies of core network corridors is of crucial importance. FEPORT members strongly believe in the added value of a multimodal connectivity of EU ports, both for businesses and communities. To achieve this, it is crucial to focus on reducing local bottlenecks to increase the share of multimodal transport solutions. Moreover, physical connectivity will be as essential as the digital one since in ports all kind of actors are interdependent, and many operations converge.
08.01.2024 – Start of the trialogues on the Directive on investigation of maritime accidents – Brussels
As trilogues regarding Directive 2009/18/EC on the investigation of maritime accidents have started under the Belgian Presidency, FEPORT would like to reaffirm its commitment to promote and ensure the safety of port workers on working on board of ships.
Some workers have unfortunately been victims of lethal accidents due to shortcomings in necessary checks performed by the captain and crew before starting work on board of ships. As a potential solution, FEPORT has long advocated for the use of a check list.
Furthermore, FEPORT has submitted an amendment to Article 5(6) in the framework of the revision of the Directive which explicitly include a reference requiring the use of health and safety checklists during the investigation of accidents involving port workers on board of ships. FEPORT hopes that this essential provision will be considered during the trilogue as it is crucial to harmonize the way investigations are conducted in all EU Member States not only for seafarers but also port workers working on board of ships.
11.01.2024 – CER, ERFA, UIC, UIP, UIRR Joint Press Release: Weights and Dimensions Directive amendment: impractical and ineffective measures for the railway sector – Brussels
As the EU institutions are debating the European Commission’s proposal to amend the Directive governing the Weights and Dimensions of commercial road vehicles (96/53), CER, ERFA, UIC, UIP and UIRR presented a joint study, carried out by the consultants d-fine GmbH, on the impacts of the Commission’s proposal.
The study confirms the concerns of the rail freight industry. Should the Commission’s proposal be enacted without substantial changes, the proposed measures would have disastrous consequences from a socio-economic and sustainability perspectives:
- Allowing the cross-border circulation of European Modular System (EMS) trucks might entail lower freight rates on the currently dominant low-density high-volume freight market, which is the segment projected to grow most dynamically over the coming decades for all land transport modes. However, operational efficiency improvement for trucks should not only translate to lower freight rates, but also simultaneously produce meaningful progress towards the EU Green Deal’s policy goals and a reduction of inland freight transport’s externalities (decarbonisation, energy efficiency, air quality, noise, accidents, congestion).
- The proposed increase in the permissible gross weight of trucks and the authorisation of EMS would lead on average to a reverse modal shift of up to 21 % for all rail segments and 16 % for combined transport. This could result in up to 10.5 million additional truck journeys per year, emitting up to 6.6 million tonnes of additional CO2 emissions and generating additional external costs amounting up to €2.2 billion. More than €1.15 billion extra taxpayer funding per year would be needed for road infrastructure maintenance.
- Although they are designed and labelled to serve the interests of intermodal freight transport, most of the measures are impractical, ineffective, or unnecessary.
The damage caused by the Commission’s amendment proposal is linked to the expected widespread use of EMS trucks, or giga liners, which would come as a result. A tripling of external costs would dramatically outweigh the potential CO2 savings of less than 10% per-vehicle. Additionally, the reduction in operating costs per tonne-kilometre or per m3 -kilometre of up to 25 % would outperform door-to-door combined transport, even though it operates with an up to 90% smaller carbon-footprint and brings an energy efficiency that is up to 70% better than trucks.
Three aspects of the amendment proposal were assessed in detail:
- The impact on door-to-door combined transport operations
(1) None of the longer EMS combinations can be handled in combined transport without increased operational complexity,
(2) Longer semi-trailers (> 13.6 m) are technically not compatible with combined transport assets and;
(3) Longer and heavier vehicles or vehicle combinations pose operational challenges for terminal operators (parking areas, circulation, lifting capabilities) and for combined transport operators and rail freight operators (train composition).
- The impact on the various rail freight segments such as single wagonload and full trainload traffic risk a potential reverse modal shift up to 21 %.
- The impact on road haulage in terms of energy efficiency and road degradation
(1) More axles potentially reduce the stress on the road infrastructure, but they also result in higher unladen weight and lower efficiency per tonne of freight.
(2) 10 trucks with 44 tonnes gross weight are more damaging than 15 trucks of 40 tonnes.
Upon evaluation of the results of the study, the commissioning associations put forward the following recommendations to the European co-legislators:
- The 40-tonne gross vehicle weight limit for border crossing trucks should remain the rule between EU Member States. Exceptions should only be possible for the road legs of intermodal cross-border operations.
- Only zero-emission vehicles should be allowed an additional gross weight, and only as long as the energy density of the batteries requires it (assuming a 1,000 km range).
- Irrespective of the introduction of the EMS, standard dimensions should be maintained for all types of loading units in order to ensure continued compatibility with different transport modes.
- While the introduction of longer or heavier vehicles would reduce road transport costs, the modelled reverse modal shift would lead to a drastic increase in external costs. This must therefore be taken into account when designing the measures, in order to favour other transport modes, such as rail, which offer significant advantages in terms of external costs and sustainability.
17.01.2024 – EU Parliament adopts a resolution on a European Port Strategy – Brussels
On the 17th of January, the Plenary of the European Parliament adopted the report 'Building a comprehensive European Ports Strategy' with 585 votes in favor, 21 against and 26 abstentions.
The report highlights the growing influence of third countries, in particular China, in European ports, with economic risks and threats of industrial espionage. To mitigate these risks, the implementation of a port strategy at the European level is strongly recommended, highlighting the need to reduce strategic dependencies, and encouraging more European investment.
The resolution also addresses challenges to EU ports' competitiveness, such as attempts to evade environmental regulations, which may lead to container transhipment activities moving to non-EU ports -. To enhance cooperation and tackle these issues, MEPs proposed a European Port Summit and urge the Commission to present a European Port Strategy by the end of 2024.
23.01.2024 – TRAN Committee: Structured Dialogue with Commissioner Vălean – Brussels
On the 23rd of January, MEPs engaged in a structured dialogue during the TRAN committee with Commissioner for Transport, Adina Vălean. The Commissioner highlighted the significant role played by Parliament in enhancing the safety and sustainability of the transport sector.
Specifically, the TEN-T revision, with increased support for rail and multimodality, will contribute to a more sustainable transport network. The provision of more secure parking areas aims to enhance safety for drivers and their cargos. The emphasis on publicly available infrastructure for networks ensures fairness and accessibility, reinforcing the resilience of TEN-T.
The strengthened governance of TEN-T is crucial, and the Commissioner welcomed the positive compromise that was reached, particularly the high standards agreement on rail as well as the achievement of Parliament to ensure a better alignment between national transport and investment plans and TEN-T objectives. The Commission is currently finalizing the legal text so it can pass through Parliament for the final vote. The launch of the TEN-T connection should happen during the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) days in April, in collaboration with the Belgian Presidency.
Moreover, in June the Commission adopted a proposal to the Maritime Safety Package, aiming to simplify and digitize the maritime safety framework. The alignment with IMO requirements and the international regulatory system is expected to increase efficiency for both Member States authorities but also our industry. The EP adopted a position on all files, and interinstitutional negotiations are ongoing for all pieces of legislation (to be concluded ideally end of February) except for the EMSA regulation expected to start in March.
In July, the focus shifted to greening freight, particularly road and rail freight. The emphasis on rail as a cleaner mode of transporting goods was highlighted, with a call for better scheduling to optimize capacity. Despite the increased role for rail in freight, the importance of lorries was acknowledged, with a need to make zero-emission vehicles more attractive under the weights and dimensions directive.
The CountEmissionEU proposal also aims to introduce a common methodology through the use of the ISO standard. In November, the fourth and final proposal of the Greening Freight package was presented. This would require Member States to put additional focus on expanding inter-modal operations.
MEP Marian-Jean Marinescu (EPP, RO) expressed his concerns on carbon leakage in the maritime sector, with ships potentially preparing to dock in Morocco. MEPs Dominique Riquet (RE, FR) and Josephine Cutajar (S&D, MT) shared this concern emphasizing the need to address carbon leakage, which is already impacting ports in the EU. MEP Cutajar called on the Commission to take necessary action and urged impact assessments for islands and outermost regions when proposing legislation.
Commissioner Adina Vălean acknowledged the crucial nature of competitiveness, assuring that the Commission is aware of carbon leakage risks and is prepared to adjust policies based on data. Moreover, she underlined that FuelEU aims to address carbon leakage with the idea of working through IMO to seek an international agreement. Commissioner Vălean stressed that any stops at neighbouring transshipment ports should not be counted as a port of call under this regulation. The Commission will continue to monitor the situation and propose revisions as necessary.
23.01.2024 – TRAN Committee: Presentation of the priorities of the Belgian Presidency - Brussels
On the 23rd of January, the TRAN Committee of the European Parliament discussed the priorities of the Belgian Presidency.
The Chair of the TRAN Committee, Karima Delli, emphasized the need to accelerate the green and digital transition, welcoming the Presidency's commitment to decarbonization, the construction of a better-connected European transport network and the examination of legislative texts. The committee discussed several topics, including rail capacity, maritime safety, road safety and passenger rights. The Presidency tried to find general approaches on these topics.
Deputy Prime Minister Gilkinet outlined the Presidency's efforts to reach agreements on decarbonizing mobility. The TEN-T dossier was concluded in December and the Presidency would try to achieve implementation as soon as possible as it was key to designing a sustainable transport network.
Regarding maritime, the Presidency hopes that trilogues will conclude over the next few weeks as this would improve shipping safety and working conditions, with the text on the Maritime Safety Agency being taken up in the June Council meeting.
Moreover, the Presidency will seek to find General Approaches on the subjects that have yet to be concluded. The files on emissions in the transport sector were labelled key and the Presidency was seeking to find solutions to ensure a modal shift towards rail. Plans for a Council meeting in April on modal shift, focusing on rail freight and cycling, were also mentioned.
23.01.2024 – ALICE’s White paper sheds light on Rail and Intermodal Transport Challenges
ALICE’s White paper sheds light on Rail and Intermodal Transport Challenges, elaborating on the challenges, findings, and recommendations to drive the integration of rail and intermodal transport in Europe. While pursuing a modal shift to rail and intermodal transport, the European Commission faces challenges that underline a significant gap between ambitions and market realities.
The White paper examines two decades of efforts and highlights a stagnant modal shift and even a decline in rail market share. While the rail sector perceives itself as competitive with road transport, shippers see significant shortcomings in rail and intermodal solutions.
Shippers, as primary users of the system, identify substantial weaknesses in rail and intermodal solutions. The most significant shortcoming emerges in the form of “lack of integration into other supply chain solutions”, revealing the critical need for cohesive collaboration along the entire supply chain.
This lack of alignment is accompanied by the shippers' demand for transparency and visibility perfectly integrated into the Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) or Transport Management System (TMS). However, existing rail tools are labelled as “island solutions”, lacking the required plug-and-play integration to fit perfectly into larger supply chain contexts.
Despite efforts to urge a unified response from rail service providers, challenges persist. Current rail tools, as described by the industry, are seen as inaccessible 'island solutions' designed primarily for rail actors and logistics service providers, rather than meeting the needs of shippers - the main customers.
Environmental concerns further complicate the landscape, with shippers and brokers expressing concerns about the environmental footprint of rail transport. The inclusion of first- and last-mile operations in their ratings underlines the need for a global and sustainable perspective.
24.01.2024 – Ministerial launch event of the European Ports Alliance to fight organized crime and drug trafficking - Antwerp
On the 24th of January, FEPORT was among the organizations invited to attend the Ministerial launch event of the European Ports Alliance Public Private Partnership to fight organized crime and drug trafficking.
The event held in Antwerp in the Port Authority building was co-organized by the EU Commission and the Belgian Presidency of the Council of the EU. It gathered Member States, port authorities, European associations, EU Agencies (Europol, EMCDDA) and representatives from customs and law enforcement authorities.
The launch of the European Ports Alliance Public Private Partnership comes against a backdrop of criminal networks using extreme violence, corruption, and intimidation in their search for profits. Seizures of cocaine in the EU are at record levels, with more than 300 tonnes seized on an annual basis in recent years. In Belgium alone, authorities seized a record 121 metric tonnes of cocaine at the Port of Antwerp-Bruges in 2023, a 10% increase from the previous year.
The European Ports Alliance aims at:
- Mobilizing the customs community against drugs trafficking to strengthen risk management and more targeted and effective controls in ports, to account for the fact that 70% of drugs seizures done by customs take place in ports.
- Strengthening law enforcement operations in ports and against the criminal organizations orchestrating drugs trafficking with support from Europol, Eurojust, the European Public Prosecutor's Office and through dedicated actions within the European Multidisciplinary Platform Against Criminal Threats.
- Setting up a Public Private Partnership helping against drugs smuggling to raise awareness among the different actors but also to support port stakeholders and private shipping companies in their role in the fight against drug trafficking and criminal infiltration.
This public private partnership will focus on identifying vulnerabilities, sharing best practices, and finding practical solutions to strengthen port security. It will address intimidation, corruption and criminal infiltration in ports, through the implementation of international and EU security standards and cooperation between law enforcement and customs with public and private operators working in the ports.
The launch was followed by a joint declaration, stating the commitment of law enforcement, customs and public and private operators working in ports, to address together the threats posed by organized crime.
The work of the European Ports Alliance will be further supported by the results of the Schengen evaluation on drugs trafficking, which was concluded in November 2023. The Public Private Partnership will meet annually at ministerial level, to identify remaining challenges, set strategic priorities and exchange on progress made. Senior official meetings will take place to prepare and follow up on the priorities set by the annual ministerial meeting.
24.01.2024 – EU Commission adopts the Economic Security Package – Brussels
On the 24th of January, the Commission adopted the Economic Security Package which includes five initiatives aiming at strengthening the EU's economic security. These initiatives are part of the broader three-pillar approach by the Commission, which seeks to promote the Union’s competitiveness, protect it against risks, and engage in partnerships with the broadest possible range of countries to advance shared economic security interests.
- Proposal to strengthen the FDI screening Regulation
The Commission's legislative proposal seeks to revise the existing framework based on an evaluation of the current Regulation. While acknowledging the positive impact of foreign investments on the European economy, the proposal aims to address potential risks to the EU's security and public order. The objective is to enhance the effectiveness of the FDI Screening Regulation by rectifying its current shortcomings.
- Monitoring and assessment of outbound investment risks
Recognizing the importance of open global markets for the Union's economic security, the EU acknowledges growing concerns about outbound investments in specific advanced technologies. At the moment, there is no scrutiny of investments that flow out of the EU to third countries. This is the reason why the Commission now seeks to broaden and structure this discussion on the basis of a White Paper to better understand outbound investments in certain strategic sectors and any potential related risks.
- More effective EU control of dual-use goods exports
Through the White Paper on Export Controls, the Commission proposes both short and medium-term actions, to establish uniform EU controls on items with both civil and defence uses (advanced electronics, toxins, nuclear or missile technology) not adopted by multilateral export control regimes due to the blockage by certain members. This would avoid a patchwork of national approaches. The White Paper also suggests a Commission Recommendation in Summer 2024 for improved coordination of National Control lists, and advanced evaluation of the EU Dual-Use Regulation by 2025.
- Enhance research security across the EU
The Commission has presented a proposal for a Council Recommendation to provide more clarity, guidance and support to Member States and the research and innovation sector at large. This initiative seeks to ensure consistency within the European Union and avoid a fragmented approach. The approach follows the principle of 'as open as possible, as closed as necessary' for international research cooperation.
- Options to support research and development in technologies with dual-use potential
The White Paper on R&D options for technologies with dual-use potential assesses current EU funding programs and proposes three options for the future. This includes maintaining the current setup, removing the exclusive focus on civil applications in selected parts of the Horizon Europe successor program, and creating a dedicated instrument for R&D with dual-use potential.
26.01.2024 – EU Commission proposes to modernize RIS in EU – Brussels
On the 26th of January 2024, the Commission adopted a proposal to amend the RIS Directive 2005/44/EC.
The initiative is in line with the EU Green Deal and the Strategy for Sustainable and Smart Mobility, which promotes the use of inland waterways for freight transport due to their energy efficiency and reduced congestion.
The proposal COM(2024)33 includes updates on the existing River Information Services (RIS) Directive, improving traffic management on the EU’s rivers and canals.
The aim of the proposal is to modernise the 2005 Directive, dealing with current and future challenges such as digitalisation, efficiency, sustainability, competitiveness, and modal shift. The proposal seeks to create a framework for the deployment of RIS, ensuring data availability, harmonisation of technical specifications and fulfilling the expectations of the inland waterway transport sector.
The text of the proposal can be found here.
29.01.2024 – EU Commission publishes transition pathway for a green, digital, and resilient EU mobility industrial ecosystem – Brussels
On January 29th, 2024, the European Commission published the transition pathway for the EU mobility industrial ecosystem.
The EU mobility transition pathway is an actionable plan co-created by the Commission with national and regional authorities, industry stakeholders, NGOs and other interested parties. It identifies, based on a bottom-up approach, the challenges, opportunities, conditions and actions needed by all parties to lead the green and digital transition and improve the ecosystem’s resilience, in line with the updated EU industrial strategy.
The mobility ecosystem covers the complete automotive, rail, waterborne and cycling value chains, including the related services, and is closely linked with other industrial ecosystems. It employs 17.6 million people and generates approximately €1.2 trillion contribution to the EU GDP (7.6% of EU total GDP).
The publication of the report marks the start of the co-implementation process with stakeholders expected to make pledges in line with the actions identified. The report will also be presented to all interested stakeholders during an event in Brussels on 29 February 2024.
The European Commission will set up a Transition Pathway Stakeholder Support Platform to facilitate and monitor this process.
29/30.01.2024 – Investors Forum for EU-Central Asia Transport Connectivity – Brussels
On the 29th and 30th of January 2024, the Investors Forum for EU-Central Asia Transport Connectivity will bring together in Brussels high-level representatives from Central Asian countries, EU Member States, partner countries along the Trans-Caspian Transport Corridor, EU Institutions, international and bilateral financial institutions, as well as representatives of the private sector and members of civil society.
The Forum aims to kick-start the process for implementing and coordinating investments to make the Trans-Caspian Transport Corridor a multimodal, modern, competitive, sustainable, predictable, smart and fast route linking Europe and Central Asia in 15 days or less, in line with the EU's Global Gateway investment plan.
On the 29th of January, the Forum started with an opening plenary session by Executive Vice-President Valdis Dombrovskis and High Representative/Vice-President Josep Borrell. It was followed by a high-level panel discussion and continued, until the 30th of January, with a series of insightful and engaging thematic sessions.
FEPORT Secretary General, Ms Lamia Kerdjoudj, has been requested to moderate a session on January 30th, 2024, on maritime transport “Crossing the Caspian Sea: turning the bottleneck into a key connection” which involved speakers from the Caspian region as well as representatives from Maersk and the Asian Development Bank.
29.01.2024 – Global Gateway: €10 billion commitment to invest in Trans-Caspian Transport Corridor – Brussels
Over the two days of the Investors Forum for EU-Central Asia Transport Connectivity, participants discussed the required investments to transform the Trans-Caspian Transport Corridor into a cutting-edge, multimodal, and efficient route, connecting Europe and Central Asia within 15 days.
The €10 billion commitment is a mixture of ongoing and planned investments which, following extensive consultations with international partners present at the Forum, the European Commission foresees to be mobilised for sustainable transport development in Central Asia in the short term.
In concrete terms, several significant commitments were made on the first day of the Forum as part of the overall €10 billion. These include:
The European Investment Bank (EIB), represented by its Vice President Teresa Czerwińska, signed Memoranda of Understanding totalling €1.47 billion with the Governments of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan as well as the Development Bank of Kazakhstan. These loans will be made possible by guarantees provided by the European Commission.
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), represented by its Vice President Mark Bowman, signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Kazakhstan, with an investment pipeline worth €1.5 billion with projects already under preparation for the overall development of transport connectivity in the Central Asian region.
Among other important announcements made on Monday 29th January, Kazakhstan offered its Caspian Sea ports of Aktau and Kuryk, as well as 22 airports, to European investors for management to build a strong transit hub between Asia and Europe.
30.01.2024 – Press Release - UCC Reform: FEPORT welcomes IMCO’s understanding of the challenges relating to temporary storage of goods – Brussels
FEPORT is supportive of the EU Commission’s UCC revision proposal. This reform is crucial to harmonize the current Customs framework. It should allow for the simplification of customs rules and procedures and further harmonize risk management thanks to the introduction of a Customs Data Hub and the establishment of an EU Customs Authority.
Terminal operators carry out cargo handling activities in the EU’s seaports and thereby form the junction between maritime and sustainable hinterland transport modes. They are essential to the seamless functioning of logistics chains, but also to the EU’s security of supply and the greening of the transport sector.
To successfully fulfill this role, terminal operators need a customs framework that reflects the operational realities of maritime logistics chains and does not lead to unnecessary administrative burdens. It is especially important to rely on relevant rules on temporary storage including a time limit that is sufficient.
Temporary storage typically ends when goods are placed under a customs procedure in the EU, re-exported or stored in a customs warehouse. In each case, terminal operators and/or other parties of the logistics chain need more time than the 3-6 days to provide the right data or transport the goods.
FEPORT therefore welcomes the amendments proposed by several members of the Internal Market and Consumer Protection (IMCO) Committee of the European Parliament to maintain the time limit for temporary storage at 90 days as spelled out in the current UCC framework.
FEPORT is also supportive of the suggested amendments to article 119(1) of the Commission proposal, which seeks to simplify the reporting requirements for customs warehouse operators thereby reducing their administrative burden.
Seamless, secure and resilient maritime logistics chains require an ambitious and well-functioning customs framework. FEPORT remains at the disposal of the Members of the European Parliament, the Council and the European Commission to jointly look for solutions that will ensure safe, secure and seamless movements of cargo in EU ports.
For more information, please see FEPORT position paper on the UCC reform.
Member’s News Corner
12.01.2024 – ICTSI announces net zero GHC emissions target
The International Container Terminal Services Inc (ICTSI), a global terminal operating company based in Manila, has committed to achieving net-zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2050.
As part of its interim goals, ICTSI aims to reduce GHG emissions directly from its operations and purchased electricity by 26% by 2030, compared to a 2001 baseline.
The company is also actively assessing emissions across its entire value chain and plans to develop an inventory by 2025, followed by target reviews. ICTSI has achieved carbon neutrality at some of its terminals and is modernizing container handling equipment to enhance energy efficiency, with 48 hybrid Rubber-Tired Gantry cranes already deployed across its network.
Christian R Gonzalez, ICTSI’s executive vice president, emphasizes the company's commitment to sustainability and continuous efforts to mitigate climate change.
Source: World Cargo news
25.01.2024 – PSA Antwerp organises Safety Week
As every year, PSA's Health, Safety, Security and Environment team organised the Safety Week, held this year from January 16th to 24th, visiting all PSA sites – Noordzee Terminal, Europa Terminal, MPET, PSA Breakbulk, PSA Zeebrugge and the Antwerp headquarters – with the aim of continuously improving safety policies.
During the Safety Week, PSA introduced a new theme regarding seatbelt use as part of its internal safety campaign. Employees had the opportunity to sit in a straddle carrier chair equipped with the new four-point seatbelt. Moreover, interactive workshops featuring a fall and trip course emphasized the significant role of order and cleanliness for a safe work environment. The CEO of PSA Belgium, Cameron Thorpe, participated in the Safety Walk at the Noordzee Terminal, actively engaging with dockworkers about their safety concerns and insights.
Source: PSA Antwerp
Events supported by FEPORT
30/31.01.2024 - 01.02.2024 - Euromaritime 2024 - Marseilles
01.02.2024 - EU Innovation Fund – Info day - Brussels
08/09.02.2024 - Green Marine Vessels – Hamburg
21.02.2024 - Moving forward together: what's next for EU mobility & transport? – Brussels
Here the link to register to the event.
12/12.03.2024 - Transport Week – Gdynia
02/05.04.2023 - Connecting Europe days 2024 - Brussels
11.04.2024 - Port and terminal seminar - Rotterdam
01.02.2024 Environment, Safety and Security Committee - Brussels
02.02.2024 Customs and Logistics Committee - Brussels
08.02.2024 Social Affairs Committee – Brussels
14.02.2024 Port Policy Committee – Brussels
15.02.2024 Board of Directors - Brussels
11.04.2024 Board of Directors - Brussels
14.05.2024 Environment, Safety and Security Committee - Brussels
30.05.2024 Port Policy Committee – Antwerp
30-31.05.2024 General Assembly meeting - Antwerp
04.06.2024 Customs and Logistics Committee - Brussels
11.06.2024 Social Affairs Committee – Brussels
09.09.2024 Customs and Logistics Committee - Brussels
10.09.2024 Environment, Safety and Security Committee - Brussels
19.09.2024 Port Policy Committee – Brussels
26.09.2024 Board of Directors - Brussels
17.10.2024 Social Affairs Committee – Brussels
27.11.2024 General Assembly Meeting – Brussels
28.11.2024 FEPORT Eight Annual Stakeholders’ Conference – Brussels
01.02.2024 ENVI Committee Meeting – Brussels
12.02.2024 EMPL Committee Meeting - Brussels
14-15.02.2024 TRAN Committee Meeting – Brussels
14-15.02.2024 ITRE Committee Meeting – Brussels
14-15.02.2024 EMPL Committee Meeting - Brussels
14-15.02.2024 ENVI Committee Meeting – Brussels
22.02.2024 ITRE Committee Meeting – Brussels
19.02.2024 INTA Committee Meeting - Brussels
Council of the EU meetings
04.03.2024 TTE Council – Brussels
25.03.2024 ENV Council – Brussels
03.04.2024 TTE Council – Brussels
11.04.2024 TTE Council – Brussels
17.06.2024 ENV Council – Brussels