Worldwide there are approximately 3,000 merchant ports and the work of the Harbour Master can vary widely from country to country and from port to port even within the same country.
With the slogan ‘Transport keeps us going’, the European Sea Ports Organisation (ESPO), together with 33 organisations issued a Declaration on 24 March stressing the essential role transport is playing in the corona crisis.
Isabelle Ryckbost, ESPO Secretary General, commented: ‘Transport and logistics play a crucial role in the supply of essential goods in this critical period. To ensure that transport can continue to keep us going, the free flow of goods between Member States must be guaranteed. We must also support and encourage all the people working in transport.
‘Their contribution in overcoming this crisis is vital. In times of emergency, ports have an essential role in providing citizens, health services and businesses with the goods and materials they need. Europe’s ports take this public responsibility very seriously. We hope the Member States are following the recommendations of the Commission to ensure that goods keep moving in Europe, in the interest of every single EU citizen.’
On 11 March, the World Health Organization (WHO1) declared the COVID-19 a pandemic and governments worldwide have taken wide-ranging measures to contain the spread of the virus.
The transport sector has a crucial role to play in the supply of goods, in particular medicines, medical devices, food and other essential commodities needed to overcome this crisis. The transport sector also proves to be a vital instrument in these times where many European citizens are restricted in their mobility.
A statement of endorsement
The undersigned European associations representing transport, infrastructure managers, operators, workers in all transport modes and logistics, contractors, local and regional authorities, logistics service providers, shippers, users and equipment suppliers in the maritime, port, inland waterways, railways, road, cycling, aviation and intermodal sectors, as well as supporting industries and companies, jointly endorse the following statement:
On 5 August IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim said:
‘I express my deepest condolences and sincerest sympathies to the families of the victims and to the Government and people of Lebanon following the catastrophic explosions in the port of Beirut yesterday.
‘The port provides a vital artery bringing food, medicines and supplies to the country and its destruction will have devastating consequences.
‘The United Nations is assisting the immediate response to the incident. The International Maritime Organization stands ready to assist in any way we can.’
We at IHMA join IMO in sending our deepest condolences to the people of Lebanon at this difficult time
International Container Terminal Services, Inc (ICTSI) has signed the concession contract with the Port Autonome de Kribi (PAK) for the development, operation and maintenance of the Kribi Multipurpose Terminal (KMT) in Cameroon.
With the signing of the contract, KMT, a subsidiary of ICTSI, is now the official concessionaire of the multipurpose terminal for the next 25 years.
At the signing ceremony in the Southern region of Cameroon, Hans-Ole Madsen, ICTSI Senior Vice President and Regional Head for Europe, Middle East and Africa, thanked the Government of Cameroon and PAK for placing their trust in ICTSI. “ICTSI is very proud to partner with Cameroon and the Port of Kribi in the operation and development of the Kribi Multipurpose Terminal,” he said.
KMT is a newly built deep-water port located 150 kilometres south of Douala. Phase 1 consists of 265 + 63 metres of berth and a 10-hectare yard. Phase 2 will include an additional 350 metres of berth and 23 hectares of yard. Kribi port is surrounded by the Kribi Industrial Area, a 262 square-kilometre zone destined to accommodate new industrial and logistical developments supporting the growing Cameroonian economy.