To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to the Answer of 17 June 2014, Official Report, column 536W, on shipping: exhaust emissions, what discussions his officials have had with the European Commission on securing EU finance to assist shipowners and ports to comply with the new sulphur regulation limits.
1 July 2014
The Department has not had discussions with the trade unions specifically on the implementation of the sulphur rules. However, the trade unions have had the opportunity to contribute their views during the eight-week public consultation on the draft UK Regulations and the associated Impact Assessment which commenced on 29 April 2014.
The maturity and efficacy of ship-board exhaust gas cleaning system technology was one of the key subjects under consideration when I chaired the ‘round table' meetings of industry stakeholders in October 2012 and March 2013 to which I referred in my Answer of 17 June 2014. At those meetings, first-hand information was forthcoming from both the shipping industry and the exhaust gas cleaning system technology industry.
The Department has engaged the European Commission about the potential impacts of the new regulations and the scope for financial support from EU sources, including finance from the European Investment Bank. The Commission has reaffirmed the possibility of support for the maritime sector through the new Connecting Europe Facility or the Trans-European Network (TEN-T) programme.
The Department is investigating impacts on prices as part of its assessment of the impact of the draft UK Regulations.
The Department will conduct the review at an appropriate time and not later than the timetable specified in the Regulations themselves, in accordance with normal Government practice and consistent with the principles of better regulation. It would be premature to make a commitment now concerning the precise timing of the review.