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Thursday, May 23, 2024
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Montenegro enhances maritime safety and revenue by granting exclusive piloting rights to Port of Kotor

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The decision of the Montenegrin government to grant exclusive piloting rights to the Port of Kotor is hailed by Minister of Transport and Maritime Affairs Filip Radulović as a crucial step toward enhancing navigational safety and boosting state revenue. The new legislation will mandate the use of tugboats in the Bay of Kotor, aiming to improve maritime safety measures. Additionally, sailors will soon be able to apply for documents online, streamlining administrative procedures.

Minister Radulović emphasized the significance of the government’s decision, noting that it will increase navigational safety and generate higher revenues for both the state and the municipality of Kotor. Under the revised concession agreement, the Port of Kotor will pay an annual fixed concession fee of €900,000, significantly higher than the previous €250,000. When combined with variable fees, this will result in an annual revenue of over €1 million.

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Furthermore, the government plans to introduce legislation requiring the mandatory use of tugboats in the Bay of Kotor and the Port of Kotor. This measure aims to bolster maritime safety and prevent accidents. Additionally, the Ministry aims to finalize a new Maritime Safety Law by the end of the year.

To enhance administrative efficiency and streamline processes, the Ministry has established two multi-sectoral coordination teams, comprising representatives from the maritime industry and seafarers. These teams will facilitate the implementation of sector policies and contribute to the effective execution of maritime strategies.

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Moreover, the Ministry is collaborating with the Ministry of the Interior to implement a digital system for maritime identification documents (SID). The project aims to digitize paperwork and streamline administrative procedures for sailors.

In line with international standards, Montenegro is also in the process of negotiating a bilateral agreement with Italy for the mutual recognition of maritime qualifications. This initiative seeks to facilitate employment opportunities for Montenegrin sailors and promote cooperation between the two countries.

Additionally, negotiations are underway with the company Kompas to establish a maritime route between Budva and Dubrovnik. This seasonal route is expected to alleviate congestion at border crossings between Montenegro and Croatia and reduce pressure on road infrastructure. The operation of the route will be handled by Kompas, with a vessel capacity of 240 passengers.

Minister Radulović reiterated the government’s commitment to consolidating the Port of Bar and emphasized the importance of investing in rail infrastructure to maximize the potential of Montenegro’s largest commercial port.

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