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The Maritime Transport has become a Serious case of Concern

By New Zealand Defence Force - Flickr: NZ Defence Force assistance to OP Rena, CC BY 2.0,

It is widely recognized that the maritime transportation needs increased oversight. The recurrence of accidents involving freight vessels have demonstrated that this important sector of the global economy needs to be more seriously regulated. The last disaster concerns a container ship whose name is MVX-Press Pearl and that ran aground 11km off the coast of Sri-Lanka. Here is the result: 278 tonnes of fuel oil and 50 tonnes of diesel oil without counting tonnes of plastic pellets for the packaging industry are deep down in the sea. The challenge of flags of convenience is naturally a key element in this issue. Ships which are registered under flags of convenience often cut operating costs and avoid the regulations of the real owner's country. This practice is very widespread in shipping. It allows the real owner to stay in the shadow. And it also allows the real owner to pay much less tax, but not only that. This makes it possible to give crews low wages. And the fees paid in docking ports are much lower. In this context, it can often be observed that such vessels are poorly maintained. In addition it can also be observed that the crews are badly trained. It must be stressed that the shipping industry has recently recorded an important increase in the number of containers lost at sea (Re.A.Koh-Bloomberg). It is estimated that more than 3000 containers dropped into the sea during the year 2020. And it is also estimated that human errors contribute to at least three-quarters of shipping industry accidents (Re.Allianz). The IMO which is the United Nation's agency responsible for shipping regulations should be much more active on these issues. And of course the country whose flag the ship must accept liability. The sea is a common good of humanity. It is not a trash can.

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