With representatives from all the ports of Europe present, the works of the General Assembly 2013 of the European Sea Ports Organisation (ESPO) in Varna, Bulgaria came to a close. The General Assembly and the Conference that followed was attended by the President of the Hellenic Ports Association (ELIME), Mr. George Anomeritis, and the President of the Association of Mediterranean Cruise Ports (MedCruise), Mr. Stavros Chatzakos, General Director of PPA SA. The general Greek presence was intense, as the main coordinators of the conference were the professors Messrs. H. Charalambides (University Amsterdam), A. Pallis (University of the Aegean), keynote speaker the head of the unit ports of the European Commission (DG Move) D. Theologitis etc.
The forum was attended by the Vice-President of the European Commission, Mr. Slim Kallas, who presented the new EU proposals for the transformation of European ports and the new European ports policy.
Mr. Slim Kallas called the ports “growth engine” and requested full financial transparency in all its operations, development processes and their transformation. As is known, the fundamental policies of ESPO, concerning ports as of 2007, are competition, efficiency, transparency and protection of the environment. Equity-wise the 319 of main ports in Europe belong by 97% to the State, the Government, Chambers and users, while only 3% are located entirely in private hands.
Along with the decisions of ESPO to the new plan of the Commission, the Union of European Ship owners, the EMSA, the IDC (International Organization port workers), the Association of navigators, agents, Chambers of Commerce, of EPCSA, the ECSA, the OECD and several European Institutes and Universities, participated in a conference and gave their views.
Prior to the Conference a special workshop on cooperation and development in the Black Sea port was held.
The official complete text (Varna 31.05.2013) issued by ESPO for the initial response of the Organisation to the EU proposal can be found at the end of this press release.
As is known, PPA SA, the Thessaloniki Port Authority SA and ELIME, in the context of “port diplomacy”, are involved in all European institutions and forums with a focus on participation in decision-making and European monitoring competition in the area of the port industry.