The status of Turkey in respect of the Short Sea Shipping

The Short Sea Shipping was at first put on the agenda in the Council report drawn up in 1995 in the European Union. In 1999, a more comprehensive definition was made. In 2001, the White Paper was published. In this Paper, an emphasis was made on the usage of the Short Sea Shipping as a more economic alternative than the other modes of transport, and this mode of transport was favored. Taking the increasing load on the highway routes into consideration, the decisions of establishing the Short Sea Shipping Centers in the EU countries with coasts to the sea, thus conveying information and taking action in close cooperation were made. In parallel with this progress, the “Short Sea Promotion Center” (SPC - Turkey) has been established in our country by the Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey (TOBB), and the secretarial duties have been undertaken by the Istanbul & Marmara, Agean, Mediterranean, Black Sea Regions Chamber of Shipping (IMEAK Deniz Ticaret Odasi) as being the promotion center's secretariat. A “Wider Europe for Transport” process was initiated by the EU on 13 May 2004. In this context, European Commission Directorate-General Energy and Transport held a seminar between 7-8 June 2004 in Spain. In the framework of the decisions made in the seminar, a “High Level Working Group” (HLWG) was determined to be built so as to work on the enlargement and development of the Trans-European Networks (TEN-T) in parallel with the EU’s enlargement process. Major important arteries that will enable the EU’s connection to the neighbouring countries or regions, thus bearing significance in terms of the international transport including the Short Sea Shipping in addition to the determination of the priority projects on these major arteries and bringing suggestions on the horizontal priorities that will facilitate transportation and trade were targeted in the first meeting of the HLWG held between 18-19 October 2004 in Brussels. In the “Wider Europe for Transport - High Level Working Group” meeting held under the auspices of the Ministery of Transport, a number of proposals were brought on the agenda concerning the extension of the routes to Turkey, and decisions were made regarding the suggestion of İzmir, Mersin, İstanbul and Samsun ports so as to enable the connection of these eligible routes with the sea and involve in the “Motorways of the Sea” concept developed by the EU in the framework of the project concerned. Among the projects offered, those of Mersin and Samsun have been accepted.

Shortsea Shippping Advantages

1. Low infrastructure costs

2. Alternative varieties of service (route)

3. Environmentally friendly low energy consumption

4. Unlimited capacity usage

5. Being much more secure in comparison to the other modes of transportation

6. Fair pricing

7. Lower jam rate

8. Optimum duration in navigation, convenient transit duration

Opportunities in the Development of the Short Sea Shipping :

1. Global warming and the reinforcement of the environmentalist sensitivity

2. Increase in the highway jams and casualties

3. Reduction of costs in the global economies

4. International support to the Short Sea Shipping

Threats in the Development of the Short Sea Shipping :

1. Unknown by the vast majority of the market

2. Insufficient infrastructures at ports

3. Insufficient co-ordination with the other modes of transports

4. Bottlenecks experienced in the Customs procedures

5. Insufficient market infrastructure

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