Members of the Committee on Transport and Tourism (TRAN) of the European Parliament
have started to discuss the Commission’s proposal for a Regulation on market access to port
services and financial transparency of ports following over 700 amendments tabled and
compromise amendments proposed by Rapporteur Knut Fleckenstein (S&D) for the
consideration of the TRAN Committee.
It should lead, from a procedures viewpoint, to a ‘neater’ enacted Regulation albeit that key port
service providers including cargo handling and passenger services still remain unjustifiably
outside the scope of the Regulation.
At this instance towage, against the strong willed position of ETA’s members, remains within the
reach of Chapter II dealing with Market Access. This is oddly in contrast with pilotage, by
definition a technical nautical service as much as towage is, which is exempted from Chapter II.
Judging from the opening discussion on 12th October, it is evident that opinions amongst the
TRAN members representing different political groups still largely differ. For this reason, several
MEP’s urged the Rapporteur not to rush the legislative procedure.
The Rapporteur and the Shadow Rapporteurs are negotiating on further compromise
amendments.The TRAN has provisionally scheduled a vote on Compromise Amendments on
10th November 2015.
By virtue of another Position Paper of 10th October 2015, the ETA has continued to emphasise
and draw the attention of the Rapporteur, Shadow Rapporteurs and other key EU and Maritime
institutional stakeholders to the discriminatory and disproportionate character of the compromise
amendments on article 10 concerning Safeguarding of Employees’ Rights.
The justification and rationale behind ETA’s latest representation are clear and in the coming
days and weeks the Association shall continue to lobby and militate in favour of the proposed
amendments in Article 10.
Moreover, the ETA is still making it clear to the Rapporteur, TRAN members and other MEP’s
that the ETA remains adamantly unwaivered on its position in favour of total rejection of the
Regulation hoping that reason will ultimately prevail in the best interest of the towage industry
and its users.