Carrying 40% of intra-European transport, Short Sea Shipping is a vital economic activity for the Community. Union’s interest in the systematic shift of cargo transport from road to sea, as an activity that would decongest European roads, reduce accidents and provide more environmentally friendly transport services is rooted back at the 90’s. Early in 2000, the Commission set out 14 action program to strengthen the effectiveness of SSS and to address the conditions that hinder further the development of SSS. In this context the Commission proposed the creation of Shortsea Shipping Promotion Centres in order to enhance the integration of the SSS activity in the transport chain.
Currently, 22 Promotion Centres operate under the European Network of Short Sea Shipping (ESN). ESN is a co-operational scheme aiming at promoting the SSS activity in Pan-European level.(European Shortsea Network – ESN).
SPC Greece is one of the founding members of the ESN and it has had the opportunity to serve twice as ESN chairman contributing every time to the value added of the Network. It is currently representing ESN together with SPC Spain in the European Sustainable Shipping Forum.
The Hellenic Shortsea Promotion Center (SPC Greece) was established in 1998 and operates by the Hellenic Shortsea Shipowners Association. This office has been assigned by the Ministry of Mercantile Marine to follow all community decisions in relation to SSS at national and community level.
Since 2012 the Greek Centre has been very active and has developed an integrated promotional program, at both national and European level. In particular, the program consists of four pillars including:
SPC Greece has been involved in all ESN initiatives from the outset and it has had a role in the making of the Athens Declaration of June 2014.