Clean shipping discussed at the Baltic Strategy Forum in Stockholm

Nov 09 2016

Clean shipping discussed at the Baltic Strategy Forum in Stockholm

European and regional leaders met in Stockholm on 8-9th November 2016 at the 7th Strategy Forum to discuss the future of the Baltic Sea region. Clean shipping and ports were some of the main topics at the event. Baltic Ports Organization (BPO) was there to present Baltic ports’ achievements and the challenges faced by the sector in order to make the Baltic Sea cleaner.

The Strategy Forum is the most important yearly event for the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region (EUSBSR) hosted this year by Sweden together with the Nordic Council of Ministers. Over 1200 participants, featuring politicians and stakeholders from the private sector as well as representatives from national and regional governments, civil society, academia and media participated in more than 40 sessions.

Stefan Löfven, Prime Minister of Sweden and Juha Sipilä, Prime Minister of Finland, took part in the session “Vision 2030 for the Baltic Sea Region”. They both underlined the increasing traffic in the Baltic Sea and the necessity of actions required to make shipping in the Baltic more environmentally friendly and safe. Challenges related to climate change were also a key topic of their speeches.

Stefan Löfven, Prime Minister of Sweden, said:

“I believe that our region can provide an encouraging example to others of how to co-operate around the UN Agenda 2030. By cooperating we make sure that our region stays competitive, environmentally friendly and creates jobs for the future”.

BPO took floor at the HELCOM seminar dedicated to the topic of fair allocation of duties regarding the protection of the Baltic Sea, which was a part of the main event. The seminar focused on the actions done so far to reach HELCOM targets in environmental protection and support needed to reach the agreed goals.

Bogdan Ołdakowski, BPO Secretary General, said:

“Baltic ports and shipping have its own role to play in making the Baltic Sea cleaner. There are a number of regulations affecting maritime transport coming into force in the next years. The implementation process of these regulations is sure to pose new challenges. We expect the administrations to take a more active stance in facilitating the dialogue between stakeholders in order to find effective solutions”.

HELCOM is an intergovernmental organization made up of the nine Baltic Sea coastal countries and the European Union. Founded in 1974, its primary aims as a governing body are to protect the marine environment of the Baltic Sea from all sources of pollution, as well as to ensure safe maritime navigation.

BPO has an observer status in HELCOM and takes part in the decision making process in the HELCOM Maritime Working Group.