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
It was reported on 5 December that MacGregor, part of Cargotec, has received deck machinery orders for four escort and four harbour tugboats from Cheoy Lee Shipyards Ltd in Hong Kong. MacGregor winches have been specifically designed to maximise vessel performance by minimising equipment weight, it is understood. These orders were booked into Cargotec’s fourth quarter 2018 order intake, with equipment deliveries planned on a rolling schedule commencing in the second quarter of 2019 through to the end of the third quarter.
Evolution not revolution. Autonomous and remote-controlled ships are being trialled but seafarers, for now, remain indispensable to safe shipping. These were key messages apparent from a special session held on 3 December of IMO’s Maritime Safety Committee, which is celebrating its 100th session. This was reported on 6 December by IMO which kindly provided illustrations.
Delegates were first treated to a song commemorating IMO’s 70th anniversary since the Convention establishing IMO was adopted in 1948) as well as the MSC 100 session.