The council of shipping transport recently rejected the proposal of Hellenic Seaways to launch extra routes during the summer months.
The council, however, approved the proposed changes to the departure times of Blue Star ferries for itineraries to the Dodekanissa.
The chief commercialofficer of Hellenic Seaways, Vassilis Katsaris, requested that the Highspeed1, that serves the West Cyclades, be able to execute extra routes for the period 19 June to 6 September.
According to Mr. Katsaris, during the summer an increase is noticed in passenger traffic towards the island group.
Mr. Katsaris reminded the council of Article 7 of the current institutional framework that foresees the launch of extra routes with the decision of the minister to cover increased transportation needs.
However, the Ministry of Mercantile Marine, The Aegean and Island Policy argued that the council was not at liberty to provide a solution to such an issue, as the article of Law 2932/2001 did not provide the ministry with the option of interference.
Representatives of AegeanSpeed Line and Blue Star Ferries backed Mr. Katsaris’ motion as such an alteration would allow them to launch extra routes as well.
The general secretary of the Ministry of Mercantile Marine, The Aegean and Island Policy Professor, Ioannis Tzoannos, noted that there is an institutional framework for shipping that cannot be violated.
According to the professor, high-speed boat routes, in accordance with legislation, should be obligatory for seven months.
The council, however, ruled that the request could be re-examined at the beginning of the summer in order to determine if there are actually increased needs for extra routes.