The President and CEO of PPA SA, Mr. George Anomeritis, expressed the certainty that the cruise industry in 2013 will move to higher levels than that of 2012, during his opening speech at the technical workshop on cruise, which took place in PPA SA HQ, in the presence of the Minister of Marine and the Aegean Mr. Konstantinos Mousouroulis, General Secretary of the Ministry of Tourism, Mr. Anastasios Liaskos, the General Secretaries of the Ministry of Marine and the Aegean, Messrs. K. Moutzouris, A. Christopoulos and A. Bousios, the President of the International Airport Authority, Prof. Stratos Papadimitriou and representatives of companies and organizations of the cruise market.
The main points of Mr. Anomeritis’ speech, can be summarized as follows:
1. Over the last 10 years the port of Piraeus has been transformed into the main cruise port across the Mediterranean region. From 621.961 in 2002 to 2.517.371 passengers served in 2011. Piraeus in 2013 will have 11 cruise berths and already the expansion of the port for 6 cruise berths for new generation vessels (longer than 300m.), has been included in the NSRF.
2. PPA SA has already announced to the cruise market that in the years 2013-2016 tariffs will remain constant.
3. With the creation and operation of 2 new cruise terminals, creating additional spaces of 8.800m2, in order to serve cruise passengers.
4. PPA SA, with the help of EU programs, has the most modern system for port security especially in the cruise area.
5. PPA SA is the only Greek port that implements regulation and programming of calls (Berth Allocation) that, with the cooperation of the companies, is able to announce by October 25th 2012, all the schedule and the berth places for 2013.
6. In collaboration with the Athens International Airport, “Eleftherios Venizelos”, later this year an agreement to avoid double checking luggage will be signed. This means that the home-porting passenger can deliver the luggage to the airport of departure and find it in his/her bunk in the ship without intermediate checks.
7. In 2010 the port of Piraeus was evaluated by a Committee of EU Experts to implement the Schengen Borders Code. In close cooperation with the Greek Police it has been implemented the largest part of the adjustment.
8. In relation to the current year (2012) the first nine months suggest that:
8.1 In 2012 compared to 2011 there will be a decrease in transit passengers by 15% and
8.2 In relation to 2010, there is an increase of 13.51%. The comparison with 2010 or 2009 is necessary because 2011 there was a "unique" year (35% increase) due to political events in North Africa (Egypt, Tunisia, Libya) and should not be taken as a basis for comparison.
9. As is known, the origin of cruise tourists by nationality in Greece comes from the countries UK, USA, Germany, France, Spain and Italy. Based on a recent study, with the exception of the latter two countries, there will be an increase in the number of cruise tourists in Greece in 2013 and 2014.
10. PPA SA is the only port in Greece, which provides all the necessary facilities such as water, fuel, food supplies, maintenance and collection of waste and wastewater under EU regulations, so it is a port-base for cruises for all the other, mainly insular, destinations.
Concluding his presentation, Mr. G. Anomeritis emphasized on the importance of the immediate establishment of a Port Authority at all the main ports of the port system (holdings) with complete separation of Authority and Enterprise, which will have as tasks:
A. The total of public interest activities such as free zones.
B. All customs and police services of interest through memoranda of understanding.
C. All police concern in port services in conjunction with the Coast Guard.
D. The coordination services for tracking and navigation
E. The arranged, through ESAL port development services (urban, fast-track) with respect to environmental regulations that apply.
"We need to quickly legislate our reform interventions for the port industry within the institutions and principles of the European port system. From the development of a dynamic national port system is dependent not only the course of shipping and handling of goods, but above all, through the cruise industry, the marine tourism and by extension the sustainability of the islands themselves and finally the Greek tourism. "