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Aleja Zwycięstwa 96/98
It is the wish of the Polish Shipping Companies Association (PZPŻ) that the Polish maritime business environment is represented in the decision making process concerning the operations of this sector at the level of the European Union. And that was the reason for deciding to join the ECSA (European Community Shipowners’ Associations), in other words a union of shipowners’ associations, which operates in Brussels and collaborates with the European Commission.
“In order for an application for prospective membership of ECSA to be considered, not only ship managers but also ship owners need to be represented. Hence the new name of our association - which reflects this change,” explains Dariusz Jellonnek, the CEO of PZPŻ.
That was the justification for changing the name of the Polish Ship Managers' Association, which refers to the objectives set by the association authorities.
Participation in the work of the ECSA will make Poland more noticeable in the international shipping community, thus allowing it to acquire a broader range of contacts with the European ship managers and ship owners. Furthermore the ECSA works in collaboration with the EC in all shipping-related matters, which makes it function in some ways as an EU expert advice body. Any maritime issues are resolved in consultation with the ECSA which provides expert opinion, in terms of legal requirements and any other rules and regulations. Effectively, the ECSA has an influence over any EU resolutions in shipping-related matters.
“The membership of ECSA will allow us to participate in the work of this body. At present when the EU is in a process of dealing with any maritime matters, Poland does not receive any issue-related queries, and thus we are unable to state our position and deliver our opinion,” Mr Jellonek adds.
However, becoming a member of the ECSA is not easy, since membership is recommendation-based, hence active measures are being taken to promote closer links with business partners from Germany, Denmark, Holland and recently also Sweden. Only in this manner, the relevant actors will learn about our potential and find out that Poland has favourable business environment conditions.
The essential point is that the majority of the European coastal states, even those from the former Eastern Bloc, are already ECSA members with influence over its operations. Whereas Poland, despite our large size and the fact of having a fair number of ship owners and ship management companies operating within our borders, is not represented. Besides that, our visibility and recognition in the eyes of the EU is at a very low level. Representatives of the PZPŻ have experienced that first hand while participating in last year’s Donsö Shipping Meet in Sweden. It turned out that Sweden, who is our Baltic neighbour, had no knowledge of the existence of such a strong ship management industry in Poland. This is the reason why the managing authorities of our association place such an emphasis on growing our business links with the Swedish entities. The situation with our German partners appears in a far more favourable light, since the German experts are aware of the existence of our ship owners and ship management industry.
“But I think, that a lot more could be achieved, especially with the focus on the Polish-German economic relations. In shipping, we have not reached such results as yet, thus there is a lot of catching-up to do, in order to at least reach the level that exists in other branches of economic cooperation between our countries,” summarizes the CEO of PZPŻ.
Article developed with "Namiary na Morze i Handel" magazine\
photo: Namiary na Morze i Handel