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.
Seafarers’ Rights International (SRI), a world leading international centre researching maritime and seafarers’ law, published on 25 September a new report exploring the nature and extent of cabotage laws around the world.
The report, Cabotage Laws of the World,has identified for the first time 91 member states of the United Nations that have cabotage laws restricting foreign activity in their domestic coastal trades.
This report describes the history of maritime cabotage and traces a number of early rudimentary legal principles. It sets out examples of the many different definitions of cabotage that exist today at the national, regional and international levels as well as examples of the restrictions of foreign activity and their waivers in domestic coastal trades.
Evidence-based decision making is highly dependent on accurate facts and the lack of an up-to-date comprehensive study has been a major impediment to thoughtful policy-making on the subject.
SRI was commissioned by the International Transport Workers’ Federation to undertake the independent study.
Deirdre Fitzpatrick, Executive Director of SRI explained at the time of the paper’s publication: ‘For many people maritime cabotage, or coasting, coastwise or coastal trade as it is sometimes referred to, is understood, if at all, only vaguely. This is not surprising since so little is published on the subject.
‘This was a complex project, given language and cultural barriers and difficulties in statutory interpretations. But the subject is important. It affects a very wide range of trades, services and activities around the world, and with significant social and economic consequences. Policy makers especially need to know more about the subject.’
Cabotage Laws of the Worldat 100 pages is based on legislation and advice received from professional law firms in 140 member states of the United Nations, many of whom are part of SRI’s independent network of lawyers worldwide.
Written by lawyers, but not for lawyers, technical jargon and heavy authoritative footnotes have been kept to a minimum in this valuable document which is available here: http://ftp.elabor8.co.uk/sri/cabotage/flipbook/mobile/index.html
About SRI and the author Deirdre Fitzpatrick
Seafarers Rights International (SRI) is an independent pan-industry centre dedicated to advancing the rights of seafarers through research, education and training in issues concerning seafarers and the law
Deirdre Fitzpatrick, Executive Director of SRI set up the organisation in September 2010, in response to the need for improved protection for seafarers in national and international laws.
A Solicitor of the Supreme Court of England and Wales she is also dual qualified in Ireland and joined the ITF in 1994 to head up its legal services department. She has considerable experience in the protection and enforcement of seafarers’ legal rights and is co-editor of Seafarers’ Rights, published by Oxford University Press
Opened by Agnes Wong Tin-yu, Director of Marine for Hong Kong SAR, today’s Nautical Institute International Conference 2019 gave rise to a lively and stimulating debate on the subject of Shiphandling.
Held at the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club, the morning session included presentations on the legal consequences of shiphandling incidents, special considerations for handling large tankers, handling ships in heavy weather and how digital technologies support command decisions in shiphandling.
In the afternoon delegates were invited to consider the role of simulator and computer based training in shiphandling and also heard from senior pilots working at the ports of Shanghai and Shenzhen. The closing presentation from Capt Stephen Wong of the Hong Kong Pilots Association focused on changes in shiphandling techniques in Hong Kong harbour.
Addressing delegates, Capt Nick Nash FNI president of The Nautical Institute, said:
”Shiphandling is obviously one of the core skills for any shipmaster. This conference has given us all further insights into this skill and the repercussions if we get it wrong!”
“Training is the key, along with proper mentoring while at sea. The collaboration and integration of Bridge teams, Pilots and VTS, while making full use of new technologies will ensure that shiphandling lies at the heart of safety and best practice in the maritime industry.”
Early in June two warships from the Standing NATO Maritime Group One (SNMG1), Turkish frigate TCG Gokova and from the Royal Navy HMS Westminster successfully completed an important training mission in support of joint warfighting logistics. Our illustration has been kindly provided by
NATO Maritime Command (MARCOM) © www.mc.nato.int/media-centre/news
It was reported from NATO Maritime Command at Northwood, NW London, that the two NATO ships escorted a civilian cargo vessel, mv Gute through high- traffic sea lanes during her transit from Norway to Sczecin, Poland carrying Norwegian military equipment for NATO exercise Noble Jump.
The safety and security of sea-based trade and transportation routes is critical to the prosperity of the Baltic nations and the NATO Alliance.
Escort training, such as that practiced by Gokova and Westminster, enhances interoperability among NATO and commercial shipping and provides reassurance to NATO allies and partners that NATO is capable and ready to maintain freedom of navigation in the Baltic Sea.