Emsa finds solution to European customs delays.
The European Maritime Safety Agency"s SafeSeaNet system could be used to solve the European Union"s customs delays, according to Emsa executive directive Willem de Ruiter.
Green rather than black triangles would mark ships trading within EU waters on Emsa"s satellite images under the plan. These ships would automatically benefit from simplified customs procedures.
European customs authorities say they cannot tell which ships have left EU waters and so often prefer to check them all, Mr de Ruiter told a Brussels seminar. ?We could mark some ships in green,? he said.
Customs procedures are one of the main hurdles to greater use of shortsea shipping in Europe. While trucks enjoy border-free movement throughout the EU, ship operators are still weighed down by hefty amounts of paperwork.
The images below show the remarkable precision with which the SafeSeaNet system can pinpoint vessels in European seas.
Taken from the Lisbon-based agency"s current work programme, they show heavy traffic in the Channel, Messina Strait and Turkish straits.
Emsa operates several satellite-based services that are now being merged into one system, opening up new possibilities. By cross-referencing position data from SafeSeaNet with the pollution detection system ClearSeaNet, the agency will be able to tell which ship was responsible for illegal discharges by tracking its position retrospectively, Mr de Ruiter said.
The integration of satellite applications is scheduled to be completed by next year.