Global trade association Interferry – representing more than 270 companies and some 1,200 individual members from over 40 countries – co-hosted a workshop at the European Shipping Summit this week, together with the shipping associations from Cyprus, Italy, the Netherlands and Spain.

Urging short sea cargo increase, the hosts welcomed more than 100 professionals and political representatives at Brussels Royal Museum of Fine Arts. Interferry´s key input was provided by Christophe Mathieu, CEO Brittany Ferries and member of the Interferry Board. Mathieu stressed the importance to propagate solutions to shift more goods transport from road to short sea services, to improve the efficiency and resilience of the European transport system.

“In member states like Italy and Spain, we see that an eco-bonus system is a successful means to increase the share of volumes at sea. By incentivising hauliers to use short sea shipping routes that are directly competing with the road network, the market can choose the more viable economic and environmental shipping solution, while the congested road network gets relieved and competition stays intact. Therefore, we call for a pan-European eco-bonus system for short sea shipping, to fulfill our joint ambition of shifting more transports from road to sea in the EU as a whole,” says Christophe Mathieu.

The eco-bonus concept financially rewards hauliers for every kilometer worth of heavy duty transport they remove from road and shift to sea.

The 2023 European Shipping Summit on September 19-20 was organised by the European Community Shipowners’ Associations (ECSA) in collaboration with Interferry and other maritime associations.

L to R: Christophe Mathieu, Brittany Ferries CEO and Interferry Director; Benito Nuñez, Director General for Merchant Marine/Spanish Transport Ministry; and Lorenzo Matacena, Chair of Shortsea Committee of Italian Shipowners Association Confitarma

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