Smart Talk with Shipping Deputy Minister

January 13, 2021

A “Smart Talk” with Shipping Deputy Minister has been organized by the Italian-Cypriot Chamber of Commerce. The event held on 12th January focused on the tender for the ferry link between Cyprus and Greece.

After the opening remarks of the President of the Italian-Cypriot Chamber of Commerce, Giuseppe Marino, the meeting proceeded with an insight talk between the Deputy Minister of Shipping H.E. Vassilios Demetriades and the Vice President of the Chamber Federico Franchina.

The Cypriot Shipping Deputy Minister has detailed the tender published in December and specified that “interested parties will have time to submit their respective offers until 29th January”.

The Minister has also explained the political and economic grounds of the resumed maritime link after its end at beginning of 2000. The route, that should be made by a Ro-Ro vessel, has been considered as a service of general economic interest and for this reason the EU Commission has granted the approval for the cost coverage through national subsides: “15 million euros for the first three years plus another 15 million for a further three years”, according to Demetriades.

During the Q&A, the Minister has underlined that the Tender’s goal is to guarantee passengers’ connection with the rest of Europe as an alternative to the air transport. However, the Tender does not prevent operators from inserting the route into a wider system of connection between East Med and Central Europe.

The service will connect Limassol (or Larnaca) to Pireaus-Keratsini in Greece according a specific schedule.

Mr. Vassilios Demetriades has also mentioned the Tonnage Tax regime in Cyprus, which is one of the most important asset of country’s economy able to make the Cyprus flag competitive among European and world countries. Moreover, the Minister has outlined the strength of Cyprus Maritime Cluster with its high-qualified service to maritime industry, such as digitalization (single on-line platform), the high attention to blue economic growth drivers (environmental sustainability and decarbonization) and joint cooperation with public officials (“Almost all the stakeholders have my mobile phone number,” said the Minister).

“Cyprus is promoting the transformation towards a sustainable maritime economy with a specific strategy and within a year a clear goal will be achieved,” Demetriades said.

The Minister has in conclusion invited Italians maritime stakeholders to collaborate on joint initiatives to become a stable and reliable partner, believing that there is “enormous potential to create synergies” between the two Mediterranean countries.

For information and insights on activities of the Italian-Cypriot Chamber of Commerce: segreteria@camcomitacipro.it

Last modified: July 7, 2021

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