Europe needs to understand the strategic importance of Greek shipping as the owner of 59 percent of the EU fleet, especially in times when shipping can play a crucial role in the continent’s scramble for energy independence, according to Union of Greek Shipowners (UGS) President Melina Travlos.
Speaking at the Posidonia exhibition during her first press conference as the president, Travlos underlined that energy transition is the most important issue for Greek shipowners.
EU regulation must protect European shipping interests
She stressed that what Europe does with decarbonisation regulations such as Fit for 55 and Emissions Trading System (ETS), must be guided by the need to preserve and promote the competitiveness of European shipping as a whole.
“Certain decisions may be detrimental to our industry and we could risk losing our competitive edge against competition from Asia and other regions,” the president of the UGS highlighted.
Global solution needed
Moreover, Travlos said that a global solution is essential and not one that is only impacting specific regions.
“We want realistic solutions that safeguard navigation safety…Through memberships in various organisations, Greek shipping is present in every international forum where we always try to help the implementation of the right policies for the industry. Europe insists on Fit for 55, whereas we insist that the solution must be international within a framework set by the International Maritime Organisation (IMO),” she added.
Greek shipping willing to adopt new solutions
The president of the UGS added that Greek shipping traditionally is the first to invest in new technologies and new vessels.
“Therefore we will also be the first to adopt any new solutions once they are made available to us. Any new fuel or technology come at cost which is ultimately passed on to the end consumer. This needs to be made widely known.”
Concluding, Travlos said that the UGS will continue to defend the position and interests of Greek shipping.
“We want people to understand the importance of shipping in our everyday lives because the industry is not just a business, but a strategic partner for every country, every government. This is something that is not clear, and we want to help fix it,” she said.
Organized by Posidonia Exhibitions S.A., the Posidonia 2022 exhibition was held during June 6-10 under the auspices of the Ministry of Maritime Affairs & Insular Policy, the Union of Greek Shipowners (UGS) and the Hellenic Chamber of Shipping.