EPCSA: Opening the window on Port Community Systems
EUROPE is only just beginning to understand the central role played by Port Community Systems in facilitating trade and applying new regulations at customs and maritime level.
That’s the view of the members of the newly formed European Port Community Systems Association. EPCSA’s founding partners are Felixstowe-based Maritime Cargo Processing; Portbase, the Dutch logistics information hub formed in 2009 through the merger of Rotterdam’s Port infolink and Amsterdam’s PortNET; Bremen-based dbh; Barcelona’s PORTIC; and the French port community system operator SOGET.
Together the partners will be developing a white paper outlining the role Port Community Systems can play as Europe moves towards the Single Window concept.
EPCSA is also strongly placed to provide expert opinion on proposed new regulation and contribute to the harmonisation and coordination of reporting formalities, processes and procedures, said SOGET’s corporate development director Pascal Ollivier, who has been appointed chairman of EPCSA for six months.
A recent executive group meeting was attended by a sizeable delegation from the European Commission’s DG-Move, including head of unit Dimitrios Theologitis, who gave a presentation on the Reporting Formalities Directive.
"This is the first time that the five major Port Community Systems have worked together on a European level, and we will open our doors to all other operators in Europe when we launch our white paper in the first quarter of this year," said Mr Ollivier. "We are looking for developing a common vision at European level; at the same time, this is an opportunity to transfer best practice to other regions."
"Until now, the EC perhaps has not understood the role, benefits and objectives of Port Community Systems. Ten representatives of DG-Move attended our meeting, giving us the opportunity to explain that we really are key stakeholders to talk to, because we are the ones implementing their regulations every day."
An important focus of EPCSA will be keeping the EC – primarily DG-Move and Ten-T – informed, said Mr Ollivier. The association could also put together a task force to enable the EC to share best practices, he added. "The EC can talk to us as a major player in the implementation of any new Directive they are looking at. We know we will be consulted and we can give our opinion on the best way forward."
The EPCSA partners plan to launch their vision in the first quarter of 2011. They appointed Pascal Ollivier as chairman for the next six months, and appointed Richard Morton as secretary general of EPCSA.
Note to editors:
The European Port Community Systems Association was launched in Amsterdam in September 2010. Its founding partners are Maritime Cargo Processing, Portbase, dbh , PORTIC and SOGET.
EPCSA is part-funded through Work Package 3 of the EU Dryport project, an Interreg IVB North Sea Region project.
For more information, contact:
Richard Morton, EPCSA secretary-general
Phone: +44 7769962554 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Posted on Thursday 10th February 2011