The second work meeting about the navigation problems on the Danube has been conducted successfully

On April 19th, 2018, the second work meeting about the navigation problems on the Danube, organized by the Bulgarian-Romanian Chamber of Commerce and Industry as part of the activities under project DANTE – improving the administrative procedures and processes related to the Danube waterway transport, which is financed through the Transnational Cooperation Program “Danube” 2014-2020, has been conducted. The following participants took part in the discussions: captain Zhivko Petrov – executive officer of EA “Maritime Administration”, Ministry of Transport, Information Technology and Communications, Eleonora Ivanova – Chair of the Managing Board of Bulgarian-Romanian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, as well as representatives of the business and public authorities – Border Police, Customs Agency, EA “Maritime Administration”, port authorities, phytosanitary authorities, ship builders and tour operators.

The purpose of the work meeting was to present the results of the meetings held in the countries included in the project, as well as to discuss the problems and obstacles to navigation on the Danube. The transnational electronic tool for reporting of barriers and good practices was introduced, as well as the unified forms of vessel control. In the framework of the following discussion, specific issues and questions related to river navigation were discussed – border procedures, health control standards, as well as measures to be coordinated by the relevant state institutions.

Captain Petrov paid special attention to the unified approach that should be applied to the work of all the Danube countries and gave examples of procedures at sea: “There have been problems with the uniform handling of the ship, which have long been resolved in maritime transport. The sea forms are unified and are only in English, while there are eight working languages on the Danube, which makes the process very difficult.”

During the meeting it became clear that the changes, proposed during the previous Round Table, in Regulation 11 on the control of vessels of International navigation, concerning the lengthy vessel inspections, are already subject to consideration and discussion and will be taken into account in the change of the legal acts in this direction.

Also during the discussion, the question of the declaration for waste for cabotage vessels was again raised, which, according to business representatives, is an additional administrative barrier and should not be required. Shortly before the end of the meeting, the representatives of Directorate “River supervision – Ruse” officially announced that the Declaration was canceled.

Тhis week, a meeting of the Working Group on Priority 1a to the Strategy for Development of the Danube Region will be held in Karlsruhe, Germany, at which Bulgarian-Romanian Chamber of Commerce and Industry had the honor to be invited and to represent Bulgaria.

At this high-level meeting, the unified forms for control of vessels, sailing along the Danube, which have been discussed and formed during the last year as part of the project activities, are expected to be adopted.

The DANTE project is a joint initiative of the state authorities and the business to harmonize and simplify administrative procedures related to the transport of people and goods along the Danube. The main objective of the project is to identify and remove administrative barriers and bureaucratic procedures that unnecessarily burden, hinder or slow down river transport.

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