The Hellenic Association of Passenger Shipping Companies (SEEN) has been admitted to the European Sustainable Shipping Forum (ESSF), an Expert Group of the European Commission created in 2013 specifically to address the challenges that the European Shipping Sector is phasing at the moment. As representatives of SEEN at the Forum have been appointed Dr. Panayotis Zacharioudakis, External Counsel and MD of OceanFinance, and Mrs. Yiota Krassakopoulou, External Counsel and Legal Counsel of Attica Group. With its admission to the ESSF, SEEN aims to further advocate Greek and European Passenger Shipping interests, as well as actively promote sustainable and efficient shipping and compliance with the environmental regulations.
ESSF, during its first years of operation, has successfully contributed to the development of a number of EU submissions to the IMO, addressing remaining barriers for the use of LNG as alternative marine fuel, scrubbers, fuel sampling etc. In January 2016, the Commission decided to extend the duration of the ESSF by 30 June 2018 by adopting a decision C(2015)9741 while opening a call for new members. The main tasks and rules of operation of the ESSF remain unchanged. During the extended period, the ESSF will continue addressing remaining issues related with implementation of the Sulphur Directive, but the emphasis will be moved to other areas like wider aspects of competitiveness, monitoring of GHG emissions, port reception facilities etc.
The Forum consists of representatives of the EU member states, representatives of industry organizations, experts from technology sector, classification societies, etc. Within the Forum there are main group and 5 sub-groups dealing with LNG as marine fuel, exhaust gas cleaning systems (scrubbers), implementation of the sulphur directive, research & innovation, financing aspects. A platform for structural dialogue, exchange of technical knowledge and cooperation between Member States and all relevant maritime stakeholders regarding maritime transport sustainability, the ESSF may deliver opinions, or develop and propose innovative solutions on any matter of relevance to the promotion of the sustainability and competitiveness of maritime transport in the EU.