Skip to main content

VDHK e.V. Germany

Verband der Deutschen Hafenkapitäne (VDHK) e.V.

German Harbour Masters’ Association

The Verband der Deutschen Hafenkapitäne is registered at the district court of the Hanseatic City of Rostock.

The aims of the Association are to:

  • Unite the Harbour Masters of the German seaports (including the inland ports accommodating sea ships in an association that promotes the interests of its members especially in the areas of safe, secure and environmentally sound operations in the ports.
  • Promote and foster the cooperation among Harbour Masters.
  • Advance the professional interests and the professional image of Harbour Masters.
  • Collect, compare and distribute information of professional interest to the members.

Regular Members of the VDHK e.V. are Harbour Masters and /or directors of port administrations of the German seaports, including inland-waterway ports accommodating ships larger than 500 GRT and enforcing the port regulations in a defined geographical port area.

Contact the German Harbour Masters’ Association via email.

Tasks of a Harbour Master in Germany

Depending on size, functionality and the legal framework, Harbour Masters of the German ports have different tasks to fulfil. The following gives an impression of the main tasks to be fulfilled by Harbour Masters and their co-workers:

Safety & ease of ship traffic

The primary task of the Harbour Master is to arrange for a safe and easy flow of ships traffic. This includes on a 24/7 basis receiving arrival and departure notifications from ships or their representatives and coordinating, together the federal waterway administration, the passage to and from the berths in the port.

Safety during cargo operations, especially dangerous goods handling

In the majority of ports the Harbour Masters are tasked as competent authorities for the supervision and control of rules and regulations with regards to the transport and handling of dangerous goods.

Environmental protection in the port area

To control the compliance with the various environmental regulations shipping is subject to, is often the task of the Harbour Master’s office. Together with the environmental authorities, pollution prevention and combat are also part of the tasks.

Port Security (ISPS)

Together with the police authorities implementation and supervision of the measures as per ISPS Code (International Ship and Port Facility Security Code) and relevant EU legislation is conducted.

Supervisory Authority for nautical/technical service providers

Pilotage, towage and mooring are essential for the safe conduct of ship manoeuvres. Masters of ships using these services expect a certain quality of these services. Depending on the port legislation permissions to conduct these services are issued by the Harbour Master, who also supervises compliance.

Operation of port facilities

In some ports the Harbour Master is also responsible for the operation of port facilities, e.g. cruise ship and pleasure boat facilities. Usually, the Harbour Master is also consulted to evaluate suitability of constructions in the port area.

If you would like to have more detailed information about the tasks of the Harbour Master and the port authority in a specific port, please, contact the port directly. Please use the list of port addresses below whose Harbour Masters are members of the German Harbour Masters’ Association.


German Ports

Brake/ Unterweser

Niedersachsen Ports GmbH & Co. KG Niederl. Brake
Brommystr.2
26919
http://nports.de


Bremerhaven Bremen

Hansestadt Bremisches Hafenamt
Steubenstr. 7a
27568
http://hbh.bremen.de


Brunsbüttel

Brunsbüttel Ports GmbH
Elbehafen
25541
http://schrammgroup.de


Cuxhaven

Niedersachsen Ports GmbH & Co. KG
Niederl. Cuxhaven
Am Schleusenpriel 2
27472
http://nports.de


Duisburg

Duisburger Hafen AG
Alte Ruhrorter Str. 42-52
47119
http://www.duisport.de


Emden

Niedersachsen Ports GmbH & Co. KG Niederl. Emden
Fr.-Naumann-Str. 7-9
26725
http://nports.de


Fehmarn

Scandlines Deutschland GmbH
Fährhafen Puttgarden
23769
http://scandlines.com


Flensburg

Stadt Flensburg Hafenbehörde
Schiffbrücke 37
24939
http://flensburger-hafen.de


Hamburg

Hamburg Port Authority
Oberhafenamt
Neuer Wandrahm 4
20457
http://hamburg-port-authority.de


Husum

Hafenbehörde im Landesbetrieb für Küstenschutz, Nationalpark und Meeresschutz Schleswig-Holstein (LKN-SH)
Am Außenhafen
25813
http://lkn.schleswig-holstein.de


Kiel

Hafenamt Landeshauptstadt Kiel
Bollhörnkai 1
24103
http://kiel.de


Lübeck

Lübeck Port Authority
Ziegelstraße 2
23539
http://luebeck.de


Norden

Niedersachsen Ports GmbH & Co. KG Niederl. Norden
Bahnhofstr. 5
26506
http://nports.de


Osterrönfeld

Hafenbehörde Amt Eiderkanal
Schulstr. 36
24783
http://amt-eiderkanal.de


Rostock

Hansestadt Rostock Hafen- und Seemannsamt
Ost-West-Str. 8 18147
PO Box 481046 18132
http://rostock.de


Sassnitz

Stadtverwaltung Sassnitz Hafenamt<
PO Box 11
18540
http://sassnitz.de


Stralsund

Hansestadt Stralsund Hafenamt
Hafenstr. 50 18439
PO Box 2145 18408
http://stralsund.de


Wilhelmshaven

Niedersachsen Ports GmbH & Co. KG Niederl. Wilhelmshaven
Postfach 2051
26360
http://nports.de


Wilhelmshaven

Stadt Wilhelmshaven
Rathausplatz 10
26382
http://wilhelmshaven.de


Wismar

Hansestadt Wismar Hafenamt
Kopenhagener Str, 1 Bürocenter
23966
http://wismar.de


Wolgast

Hafenamt
Burgstr. 6
17438
http://wolgast.de

Latest News & Events

18 June 2024

The International Harbour Masters Association (IHMA) is pleased to announce this year’s award winners, celebrated at the 14th IHMA Congress in May.

The key theme of the 2024 event was The Marine Adventure – Evolving and adapting to change in today’s ports. Tanger Med Port Authority hosted the congress at the Tanger Med Port Center.

Steve Rushbrook never predicted he would become a Harbour Master, let alone in one of the southernmost ports in the world. His career pathway to becoming a Harbour Master for New Zealand’s Otago Regional Council shows what is possible for those with less conventional backgrounds.

Role of Harbour Master/ Port Operations Professional
Security
Port Call Optimisation
Ship image
Vessel Traffic Services
Safety
dock image
Emergency Management
Environment

Become a Member

Join the world’s premier professional body for harbour masters and receive up-to-date information on the industry and access to the members' area of the website.

Become a sponsor

Become a sponsor of the IHMA today and reap the benefits for your business:

  • Worldwide exposure
  • Prominence on the IHMA website
  • Instant access to your services and products for your existing and potential customers
  • Access to the key decision makers on marine operations in Ports – the Harbour Master
  • The opportunity to showcase your services and products at an international congress every two years

Be a part of the future of a vibrant, respected, professional and influential maritime organisation...IHMA

Download EHMC's Newsletter

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, ex vix insolens oportere accusamus, mea nulla aliquip virtute id, et commodo debitis voluptua mel. Vel ut doming scaevola, habemus gloriatur elaboraret ei pro.

Download archived

EHMC newsletter

Our Sponsors

Latest Events

Four Points by Sheraton Hotel, Lagos, Nigeria
OceanWise Charting Water Workshop

Brought to you by OceanWise and Brewzone Africa - Join the first Charting Water Workshop entitled “Harnessing Environmental Data for Hydrography" which is running on the 15th - 16th April 2024 at the Four Points by Sheraton Hotel Lagos, Nigeria.

Bringing hydrography professionals together from all over West Africa, this intimate 2-day workshop will provide you with practical knowledge, guidance and best practice. You will enjoy a mix of presentations, round table discussions and training. Our expert speakers will guide you through the latest developments, technologies and methodologies used in hydrography, helping you understand the importance of accurate marine environmental monitoring data to support marine operations and national infrastructure. We will also have a number of key real-world case studies and local experts in attendance to provide some best practice and recent hands-on experiences.

Full details of the developing programme and registration can be found here on our Eventbrite page

Registration is now open. Spaces are limited so please register now to secure your place.

What will it cover?
This workshop will provide you with practical knowledge, guidance and best practice. You will enjoy a mix of presentations, round table discussions and training. Our expert speakers will guide you through the latest developments, technologies and methodologies used in hydrography, helping you understand the importance of accurate marine environmental monitoring data to support marine operations and national infrastructure.

Who is it for and why should I attend?
This is for professionals with an interest in Hydrography based in, or working in, West Africa.
Ideal for individuals from a variety of industries including Ports, Harbours, Inland Waterways, Oil and Gas, Education, Navy, Maritime Authorities, Research and Development etc etc
It offers a friendly and interactive environment to expand your knowledge, network with fellow professionals and collaborate on real-world case studies.

Gain valuable insights from industry experts, share your experiences, and receive a certification of completion on day two

How do I book?
Visit our Eventbrite page for full details and registration

QE2, Port Rashid, Dubai - Grand Foyer

Harbour Master & Towgae Conference

Hollywood Beach Marriott
Navtech Conference, Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Navtech Conference 2023

Attention deep water and ocean towing masters, pilots, fleet management administrators, regulators and navigation operations professionals!

Join us in Fort Lauderdale for the maritime industry’s premier annual navigation forum!

Navtech, 5th and 6th December 2023, Hollywood Beach Marriott, Fort Lauderdale, Florida

  • Learn about developments in navigational best practices, technology and regulation.

  • Engage with the regulatory and manufacturing sectors about your experiences, and your challenges.

  • Get access to the operations sector that actually uses navigation hardware and software.

Tanger Med Port Centre, Morocco
IHMA Congress 2024

Join us on a marine adventure in Morocco. The 14th International Harbour Master Congress will take place at Tanger Med Port Centre from 21-24 May 2024. This year’s theme is The Marine Adventure – Evolving and Adapting to Change in Today’s Ports. You are welcome to come along for three days of presentations, deliberations and discussions covering every step of the port call process. On the fourth day, you can enjoy a guided tour of the Port of Tranger Med. To learn more, or to register for the event, please visit the IHMA Congress Website.

 

INTRODUCING TANGER MED

Tanger Med is the 1st port in Africa and in the Mediterranean.

It’s a global logistics gateway located on the Strait of Gibraltar and connected to more than 180 ports worldwide with handling capacities of: 9 million containers, exports of 1 million new vehicles, transit of 7 million passengers and 700,000 trucks on an annual basis.

CARGOES HANDLED

CONTAINER TRAFFIC: SURPASSING TEH 8 MILLION MARK

In 2023, Tanger Med Port processed 8,617,410 TEUs*, marking a growth of 13.4% compared to 2022. This remarkable achievement, equivalent to 95% of the port's nominal capacity, was accomplished 4 years ahead of targets.

The outstanding performance is attributed to the successful operations of terminals TC1 and TC4, managed by Maersk-APM, and the continuous development of terminal TC3, operated by Tanger Alliance (A joint venture owned by Marsa Maroc with a 50% stake, in partnership with Eurogate holding 40% and Hapag Lloyd holding 10%). Additionally, 2023 witnessed record productivity levels, surpassing monthly peaks of 800,000 TEUs handled.

RO-RO TRAFFIC ON THE RISE
In 2023, 477,993 trucks were processed, representing a 4.1% increase from 2022. Industrial product traffic saw a significant surge of 14.3% compared to the previous year, offsetting a 7.7% decrease in agribusiness product traffic.

INCREASE IN NEW VEHICLE TRAFFIC
The two vehicle terminals in the port complex handled 578,446 vehicles in 2023, reflecting a 21% increase from 2022. This traffic primarily includes 341,758 vehicles for export, produced by Renault factories in Melloussa and SOMACA in Casablanca, along with 176,208 vehicles exported by the Stellantis plant in Kénitra.

RISE IN SOLID AND LIQUID BULK TRAFFIC
Liquid bulk traffic experienced a 6% growth compared to 2022, a total of 9,838,157 tons of handled hydrocarbons. Simultaneously, solid bulk traffic witnessed a 44% increase from the previous year, totalling 581,042 tons processed.

PASSENGER TRAFFIC: RETURN TO NORMAL
In 2023, Tanger Med Port Complex welcomed 2,700,747 passengers, marking a 30% growth from 2022. This traffic has returned to pre-COVID-19 crisis levels.

GLOBAL TONNAGE: SUBSTANTIAL GROWTH
Tanger Med Port Complex handled 122 million tons of goods in 2023, reflecting a 13.6% increase from 2022, with 21% in Import/Export. This recorded global traffic is highest at the Strait of Gibraltar and across the Mediterranean. This traffic also represents more than half of the total tonnage handled by all ports in Morocco.

MARITIME TRAFFIC ON THE RISE
In 2023, a total of 16,900 ships called at Tanger Med Port Complex, marking a 17% growth from 2022, including 1,113 mega-ships (over 290 meters), representing a 16% increase from the previous year.

These results underscore the relevance of the vision of His Majesty King Mohammed VI for this strategic project.
Tanger Med remains firmly focused on the future, ready to face new challenges and strengthen its position as a major logistics hub in Morocco and the Euro-Mediterranean region.

Crown Towers, Perth, Australia
AMPI

For 25 years AMPI has been recognised as the professional body for developing, setting and leading in the evolution of industry standards, safety management protocols and advising regulatory bodies on matters related to Marine Pilotage.

As a globally recognised organisation and partner of the International Maritime Pilots Association (IMPA), we directly contribute to the work of the International Maritime Organisation. With over 260 active pilot members, we have the experience and know-how to develop widely recognised industry guidelines including initial and continual pilotage training standards. AMPI continues to influence the development of world-leading practice and in doing so brings a higher level of safety to the ports and regions where our members operate.

This block is broken or missing. You may be missing content or you might need to enable the original module.

Download the IHMA Constitution

The IHMA constitution sets out the establishment of a region of the IHMA, the committee role and authority, its formation and management.

Latest News & Events

IHMA Congress Award Winners 2024 IHMA announces 2024 Congress award winners

18 June 2024

The International Harbour Masters Association (IHMA) is pleased to announce this year’s award winners,… FIND OUT MORE

Steve Rushbrook Harbour Master New Zealand Empowered for development

Steve Rushbrook never predicted he would become a Harbour Master, let alone in one of the southernmost ports in the world. His career pathway to becoming a Harbour Master for New Zealand’s Otago… FIND OUT MORE

Latest News & Events

18 June 2024

The International Harbour Masters Association (IHMA) is pleased to announce this year’s award winners, celebrated at the 14th IHMA Congress in May.

The key theme of the 2024 event was The Marine Adventure – Evolving and adapting to change in today’s ports. Tanger Med Port Authority hosted the congress at the Tanger Med Port Center.

Steve Rushbrook never predicted he would become a Harbour Master, let alone in one of the southernmost ports in the world. His career pathway to becoming a Harbour Master for New Zealand’s Otago Regional Council shows what is possible for those with less conventional backgrounds.