On 1 January 2011, the European Union will introduce a new online register that will "name and shame" shipping companies that perform poorly on vital safety inspections (port state controls), while those with strong safety records will be given good public visibility.
Port state controls are crucial for preventing shipping disasters and the resulting loss of life and environmental damage. Companies and states that show up as performing poorly will be subject to more intensive, coordinated inspections in EU ports.
Manufacturers and other industries will thus be able to choose which shipping companies they use for freight or passengers with full knowledge of their safety record.
The EEA Joint Committee also incorporated a regulation for expanded inspections on ships, as well as a directive on port reception facilities. The latter is aimed at reducing illegal discharges from ships using ports in the Community, by improving the availability and use of port reception facilities, thereby enhancing the protection of the marine environment.
Every year more than 80 000 individual ships call at European ports.
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