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IWT and ports present vision towards 2030

Inland waterway transport and ports ask Europe for an ambitious policy action plan and continuity in funding                                                                                                                                        (full text here)

Today, a coalition of inland waterway transport (IWT) and ports has handed over a declaration with its vision towards 2030 to Wim van de Camp, member of the European Parliament, and Violeta Bulc, the EU Transport Commissioner. The handing over of the declaration took place during a high-level IWT and Ports event, hosted by the Port Autonome de Strasbourg.

In a first reaction, MEP Wim van de Camp and Commissioner Violeta Bulc emphasised their support to back the sector and its initiatives to fully exploit its potentials and better integrate it into the multimodal transport chain.

The joint declaration of the coalition explains the common vision of the inland waterway transport and

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Recognision of Qualifications in IWT

European Social Partners welcome the Inland Waterway Transport Directive on recognition of professional qualifications
“Fair play and a level playing field are the core demands of the sector, and these can only be achieved through European legislation,” says Christiaan Van Lancker, President ESO.

Today, the Plenary of the European Parliament adopted the Commission’s proposal, thereby taking a significant step towards a European labour market for IWT professionals as well as harmonised working and living conditions in this international transport sector.
The European Barge Union (EBU), the European Skippers Organisation (ESO) and the European Transport Workers’ Federation (ETF) express their satisfaction on the adoption of the Directive on recognition of professional qualifications for European Inland Waterways Transport (IWT).

(read full text here)

CESNI professional competencies in IWT

Standards for professional competencies accepted by working group                                    

Strasbourg CCNR – The European Committee for drawing up Standards in the field of Inland Navigation (CESNI) met in Strasbourg on Thursday 18 October 2017; for the last time the meeting was chaired by Mr. Max Nilles, the representative of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg.
Taking part in the discussions were twelve Member States, as well as the Sava Commission, the UNECE (United Nations Economic Commission for Europe), and several organisations accredited with the CESNI. The Republic of Ukraine was officially recognised as an Observer State at this meeting.
At this last meeting of 2017, the Committee decided to grant the Republic of Ukraine Observer State
status. The Committee also confirmed the setting up of a temporary working group for electronic systems aboard inland navigation vessels.

This meeting was also the opportunity for honouring the Committee’s 2016-2017 Presidency, provided
by the Luxembourg representative, Mr. Max Nilles.
The 2018-2019 Presidency will be provided by Mrs. Lucia Luijten, represetative for the Netherlands.

Standards for professional qualifications
Concerning the standards for competencies, the working group on professional qualifications accepted the proposals of the corresponding non-permanent working group for CESNI standards.
Work on drawing up CESNI standards regarding the practical examinations for boatmaster, the radar
certificate, passenger navigation and LNG expert is still in progress. Initial drafts are to be submitted to the working group in November next.
Last September the criteria for the medical fitness of crew members were discussed in detail by the working group. As for the competencies’ standards, a final consideration within the working group and the draft which will be forwarded to the committee are anticipated for the November meeting.
The expert group for simulator standards, set up by CESNI, drafted a proposal for technical requirements and technical test procedures for vessel handling simulators, which the working group can examine in November this year.

2017 IWT market observation report

Inland ports and promotion are of vital importance for the development of inland shipping …

               

For the second year, the Central Commission for the Navigation of the Rhine (CCNR) publishes its annual Market Observation report on inland navigation in Europe, in cooperation with the European Commission.
This report, the outcome of close collaboration between the two institutions, provides an exhaustive overview of the market situation and of developments in European inland navigation during 2016.
Both Mrs Bulc, European Commissioner for Mobility and Transport, and Mr Georges, Secretary General of the CCNR, wrote a foreword, illustrating the publication’s resolutely European dimension.

Short analysis
The analysis of the development of transport volumes on major European waterways and in the principal European inland ports is a central component of the annual report. In 2016, river transport represented goods transportation of almost 145 billion tonne kilometres, with an increasing important concentration within the Rhineland countries.
The publication takes a particularly close look at each transport segment, in particular containers. Container transport increased by 4.6% throughout the European Union to reach 15 billion tonne kilometres.
Passenger transport, in particular the river cruise segment, also continued its upward trajectory in 2016: the 335 cruise vessels plying the Rhine, Danube , Seine, Elbe, the Rhone and other European Union rivers carried a total of 1.36 million people.

Stability guide for container barging

Practical guide available in four languages                                 

CCNR published recently a stability guide for container transport in inland navigation. To achieve this ready-to-use practical guide ESO, EBU, Aquapol and CCNR did work closely together.  For the benefit of all stakeholders on board and ashore it is decided to publish this guide to good practice in container barging.
The guide illustrates in an easy-way the basic principles of stability and shows real-life (tried and tested) examples influencing stability in a positive way.

The target groups for this guide include as well the inland container navigation boatmasters as the crew members responsible for the stability and safety of their vessel in every day situations.
At the same time, this guide is also helpful for employees in all sectors closely associated with IWT, e.g. for employees of relevant authorities, terminal staff, forwarders, etc.

You can download the guide by clicking one of the flags above.

EDINNA’s secretary on rescue course

When duty calls …

While calling the successful candidates of the final examinations, teacher Tom van den Berg and director Arjen Mintjes* of the Maritime Academy Harlingen were signalled by the Coast Guard to rescue a sinking French sailing yacht at the Pollendam** with other colleagues of the KNRM** Harlingen.
The  successful candidates had to wait a little longer for their results, but the French sailor was brought into Harlingen safe and sound thanks to this fast KNRM action. ‘

*) Mr Arjen Mintjes is secretary of EDINNA, the European educational association of schools and institutes for inland waterway navigation.

**) Pollendam is a breakwater between Harlingen Harbour and the island of Terschelling
KNRM = Royal Dutch Rescue Association]

Kees den Braber deceased

Yesterday we received the unexpected notice of the decease of Kees den Braber. After a short but severe illness he died Thursday morning, the first of June, at the age of 66.

Many of you may remember Kees as a very dedicated council member of ESO on behalf of CBOB (NL), until his retreat in 2008. He started in ESO’s council a long time ago, from 1992 when CBOB joined ESO as a member organisation.
Whenever he could he attended ESO’s meetings, often he had to travel from somewhere in France or elsewhere, that is, if the ships businesses allowed this.

When Kees was present at ESO’s Council meetings you couldn’t miss him. He had a clear view on the challenges and problems IWT had to master, especially the sector and regions his entreprise was operating in. He firmly supported cooperation of skippers and he himself was a convinced member of ELV.

He sailed and managed his ship Avanti together with his wife Sari den Braber-de Blaey, who always stood beside him and supported him. We’ll think of her and their children in this great and sudden loss.

ESO and the IWT sector owe a lot to his knowledge and expertise.

Funeral card can be downloaded here.

50 Years of Social Dialogue in IWT

…….sector striving towards a sustainable and prosperous future …

The European Social Partners in Inland Waterways Transport, EBU (European Barge Union), ESO (European Skippers’ Organisation) and ETF (European Transport Workers’ Federation) celebrate 50 years of social dialogue.  The tasks facing the Social Partners now will change fundamentally as new challenges emerge rapidly in the area of automation and digitalisation.

“In this process the instrument of Sectoral Social Dialogue has proven to be indispensable and the Social Partners express their thanks to the Commission for its continued commitment and support.” says Jacques Kerkhof, President of the Sectoral Social Dialogue Committee for Inland Waterways Transport.

The European Social Partners are committed to addressing all these challeges in an open spirit and striving to create an IWT sector offering an attractive career perspective to current and future boatmen and boatwomen based on the pillars of economic, environmental and social sustainability.

View this link for the full press release.

IWT market report spring 2017

Special focus on mineral oil industry  (german, french and dutch versions available)

The new quarterly report on European inland navigation, written by the Central Commission for the Navigation of the Rhine (CCNR) in partnership with the European Commission, is now available.

In particular, this report analyses in detail the first three quarters of 2016 in terms of traffic compared to 2015,  as well as the economic situation of important sectors for the inland navigation. In addition to its usual topics (economic context, freight traffic on inland waterways and in ports, operating conditions and outlook) it includes a special focus on the mineral oil industry.

  Pdf version of the report / Online version of the report

  PDF-Version des Berichts / Online-Version des Berichts

  Version pdf de ce rapport / Version en ligne de ce rapport

  PDF-versie van dit verslag / Online-versie van dit verslag

ESO’s NY event

.. ‘life is simple, but we insist on making it complicated’ .. (confucius)

Last Monday afternoon, February 20th, ESO held its annual New Years’s reception.
Both the new Secretary General of the CCNR, Bruno Georges, as DG-MOVE’s new Head of unit for Ports & IWT, Daniela Rusça, gave their view on challenges and opportunities for IWT.
President Christiaan Van Lancker followed with his traditional NY’s speech, to clarify ESO’s policy and view on various important IWT matters.
The event was moderated by ESO’s Secretary General Hester Duursema.


Christiaan VanLancker, Daniela Rusça, Bruno Georges (left to right)

Approximate 35 guests from European Commission, member states, ports, inspections, organisations and of course members, were informed about the ongoing businesses  and a preview of what is to come.

The event was hosted at the premisses of ITLB, right near the Berlaymont building of the Commission.