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Cyprus, UK sign MoU to increase cooperation in shipping

The Cyprus Shipping Deputy Ministry (SDM) and the Department for Transport of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to further strengthen shipping relations between the two states.

The agreement includes a range of commitments designed to address current challenges faced by the sector. Drafted to align with the needs and objectives of each country, the MoU aims to stimulate economic development on a mutually advantageous basis, with a specific focus on driving progress in shipping’s response to climate change issues. Joint scientific and technical workshops, conferences, training programmes, seminars, and courses, amongst other initiatives, will be implemented to drive shipping towards its sustainability goals.

Core focusses of the agreement also include maritime safety and security, and pollution from ships. The two states are also committing to jointly address issues around piracy, fraudulent ship registrations, seafarer welfare and training, and the implementation of transport-related sanctions that impact the sector. Both parties pledge to promote cooperation in shipping within the framework of international and regional councils such as the International Maritime Organization and the Commonwealth.

“Collaboration has always been a cornerstone of Cyprus’ vision,” said Cyprus Shipping Deputy Minister, Vassilios Demetriades. “This MoU aligns with the extrovert pillar of the SDM’s strategy, which champions a joint approach to driving positive progress in the greater shipping sector while always safeguarding competitiveness.

“Cyprus looks forward to working closely with the UK, exchanging information on best practice when it comes to maritime governance, knowledge, research, and innovation. Furthermore, it is our hope that this partnership will accelerate the digitalization of ship operations, and, importantly, improve the resilience of the sector in terms of cyber security.”

The MoU was signed on Tuesday, 21st February 2023, at the premises of the Shipping Deputy Ministry in Limassol by the Cyprus Shipping Deputy Minister, Mr. Vassilios Demetriades, and the British High Commissioner, Mr. Irfan Siddiq, representing Maritime Minister of the United Kingdom, Baroness Charlotte Vere of Norbiton.

Prior to the MoU’s signing, Mr Demetriades had a constructive virtual meeting with Baroness Vere.

Following the signing ceremony, High Commissioner Siddiq said: “This agreement marks a new chapter in relations between Cyprus and the UK, both of which have long and rich seafaring histories. We look forward to partnering with Cypriot authorities to support maritime safety and security. We believe that closer cooperation will benefit our local, regional and international shipping communities.”

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