BRCCI is one of the financed partners on project “DANTE – improving the administrative procedures and processes related to the Danube waterway transport”. As such, the organization closely follows all arising questions regarding the obstacles and problems of shipping on the Danube as a whole, but more importantly – on the Bulgarian part of the river.
The last few months were quite busy because of the execution of various activities for the project implementation. For starters, there was a round table, related to the shipping problems on the river. Also, an electronic tool for reporting administrative barriers and positive experiences was developed, which is already translated to Bulgarian and is available online.
Another important activity, but outside this project, which the Chamber is actively participating in, is the campaign of Pro Danube International (a non-government organization, which many transport companies that would like to ship cargo on the Danube participate in, and which is also the leading partner of project DANTE) to raise awareness among the Bulgarian authorities of one very important problem – the dredging of the Danube in its most critical areas, the procedure for choosing a contractor, the financing of this activity and the current inability to secure optimal conditions for shipping in the Bulgarian part of the river.
Why has this initiative started?
Immediate dredging in the Bulgarian part of the Danube needs to be done effectively and as soon as possible, otherwise the navigation on the Danube will be blocked since the depth of the fairway in the critical area will go below 1.8 meters because of the low water level. That blockage will lead to big losses for the fleet operators and for the whole industry connected to the Danube.
Some of the most affected stakeholders will be the river cruise companies. Several cruise operators have already told Pro Danube International, that if they are blocked in Bulgaria again because of the lack of maintenance of the waterways and shipping conditions, they will write off the destinations in Lower Danube from their schedule. This decision will seriously decrease the river cruise tourism to the Bulgarian cities, which has started to increase in the last few years.
Aiming to demonstrate how important the role and the meaning of fast measures and decisions are for the prosperity of shipping on the Danube, our colleagues from Pro Danube International initiated a petition on this matter. From the links below, you can find the letters collected by them in support of the initiative, as well as the original materials for this case.
You can join the initiative by copying the suggested example letter of support to a form of your company/organization, or come up with a text of your own, and send us the scanned copy of that letter at email@example.com and/or a copy to firstname.lastname@example.org
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