The UK Chamber of Shipping has welcomed the publication of the Mountevans Report, an independent study by Lord Mountevans on the competitiveness of the UK shipping industry.
The Maritime Growth Study, published on the opening day of London International Shipping Week, was commissioned by Government early in November 2014, and is intended to explore how the decline in the UK flag can be reversed, and the UK’s place as a world-leading maritime nation can be built upon for the benefit of the UK economy.
The UK Chamber particularly welcomes the focus on industry and government working together to take forward the recommendations, building upon work already undertaken to grow the industry and invest in boosting the skilled workforce that already exists.
The chamber particularly welcomed the recommendations to:
- Streamline the administrative process for companies doing business in the UK
- Reform the Maritime and Coastguard Agency – something which the UK Chamber has consistently called for.
The Study follows data, which emerged early in 2015, showing that the number of ships flying the UK flag has fallen by a third in the last 5 years.
In welcoming the publication of the Maritime Growth Study, the industry has warned that the status quo is ‘not an option’ if the UK shipping industry is to remain an influential global maritime player.
UK Chamber of Shipping Chief Executive, Guy Platten said: “We welcome the launch of this report and look forward to working with government to create tangible outcomes based on the recommendations. The Study recognises that substantial reform of the Maritime and Coastguard Agency is necessary to reverse the decline in the UK flag and to boost our international standing as a world leading place to do maritime business. Growth will be delivered when the global industry recognises that the UK is proactive in creating a competitive, commercially focused and ambitious Ship Register. Today is a hugely important first step in creating it. Numerous shipowners around the world have told me that they will join the UK Ship Register and invest in the UK if reforms are delivered. It shows there is demand and goodwill, and with the right political will we can make the most of the opportunity.”
Mr Platten also recognised the Study’s call for close collaboration across the breadth of the maritime sector.
“We welcome the report’s confirmation that the industry’s strategy to improve cross-sector collaboration is the right one. The UK Chamber and its partners have been pooling resources and working evermore closely for a number of years, and the industry remains well placed to build a broad alliance across the maritime community to effectively represent its interests, and promote the UK as a world-class place to do maritime business.”