Four are the steps the Deputy Ministry of Shipping pushes forward in a bid to ensure Cyprus’ competitiveness. One year after its establishment, the deputy ministry has drafted a road map and gradually implements necessary reforms. The mission of Deputy Minister Natasa Pilides is to consolidate Cyprus’ position as a world-class maritime centre for the economic and social benefit of the island.
In a nutshell, the deputy ministry’s aim is to further expand the Mediterranean island’s Registry and maritime cluster, safeguard Cyprus’ competitiveness, strengthen international relations, improve maritime safety and environmental protection, implement a blueprint for blue development and upgrade available services.
To achieve these goals, smaller targets have been set so as to enable Cyprus to continue to maintain the stable and business-friendly business framework provided to foreign investors in shipping. The deputy ministry has to move within two axes: firstly, to maintain the island’s competitive tax policy and, secondly, to reduce bureaucracy.
Therefore, the deputy ministry supports the smooth extension of the Cyprus Tonnage Tax and is in the process of also simplifying shipping fees.In other words, the deputy ministry is now reviewing the government’s policy on ship registration. It also works on establishing a single service centre for shipping – the only way to reduce bureaucracy which affects all public departments.
Technology also plays an important role, and Cyprus should contribute towards shipping-related technology. This is why the deputy ministry practically supports innovation programmes and is in touch with the Ministry of Finance for block chain. Many companies in Cyprus are behind innovative actions aiming to integrate new technologies in shipping, the deputy ministry has indicated.
In addition, the deputy ministry seeks to upgrade the image of Cyprus overseas through a public relations management strategy. Within this framework, Pilides is now in Lisbon or a working visit during which she will also meet Portuguese Minister for Maritime Affairs Ana Paula Vitorino to exchange views on bilateral issues. Pilides will also hold talks with the Executive Director of the European Agency for Safety at Sea (EMSA).
Also in Lisbon, Pilides yesterday inaugurated a photo exhibition organised by the Press and Information Office called “The Maritime Tradition of Cyprus-from Antiquity to Modern Times”. The exhibition, hosted at the Maritime Museum of Lisbon (Museu de Marinha, Belem Lisbon) will be on until April 18.