The Ministry of Maritime Economy and Inland Navigation (MGMiŻŚ) has specified two priority areas of its activity. The first of them includes the functioning of the ministry, and the competence that has been or is to be taken over from other ministries. The second of them concerns the major projects that the ministry is planning to implement or monitor.
Regarding the first priority, the MGMiŻŚ has specified the 5 most important areas of activity: shipbuilding industry, navigation (primarily inland navigation), operation and economy of ports, fishing, and education. The Ministry is currently in charge of the maritime academies in Gdynia and Szczecin, but it also wants to have a large influence on secondary school and vocational education. Particular focus, however, is put on the shipbuilding industry.
As the representatives of the MGMiŻŚ repeatedly emphasised, we have a tremendous potential regarding shipbuilding that is only used to a minimal extent. This, obviously, is accompanied by the current economic situation on the market. That is why, in the opinion of the Ministry, the development of maritime economy is impossible without the development of the shipbuilding industry.
Regarding the key ports: Szczecin and Świnoujście port group and the ports in Gdańsk and Gdynia, the Ministry plans to develop a strategy for port development until 2020 with a perspective until 2030. In that area, emphasis is to be put on the increase of the volume of goods that has to arrive in the ports, and inland navigation is to be one of the major contributions to that increase. Also, the MGMiŻŚ plans to amend the act on ports and sea harbours. The Ministry wants to ensure that the fiscal matters are treated consistently so as to avoid all doubts that appeared in the ports of Tri-City and in Szczecin and Świnoujście in relation to taxes.
As regards the second priority, relating to projects, the MGMiŻŚ wants to finish the construction of two transport corridors passing through Poland, and it also plans to construct a new container terminal in Świnoujście and a navigation channel through the Vistula Spit. This is complemented by the routine projects implemented at every port, e.g. construction of a new turning basin in Gdynia, or projects related to the improvement of road access (construction of motorways, the so-called red road in Gdynia or the western bypass of Szczecin) and railway access, e.g. railway line no. 201 to Gdynia (this will require cooperation with PKP PLK), to the ports. Regarding inland navigation, in turn, the absolute priority is the renewal and construction of river waterways. This refers firstly to the Oder River, and secondly, to the Vistula River, although the projects are to be implemented in parallel at both rivers. This will require the ratification of the AGN convention, and there are ongoing talks with the UN regarding that matter.
The priorities of the Polish maritime economy are to be one of the topics of the Maritime Economy Forum Gdynia 2016.
fot. Przemysław Kozłowski