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Thursday, September 20, 2018


It is still too early to judge the full political impact of the "Ievoli Sun" incident on the EU processes. Pressure from particularly France is clearly very strong at the moment, and President Chirac in person has spoken to both Commission President Romani Prodi and to the Chairwoman of the European Parliament. Both have promised faster and more thorough measures.

Leading Commission officials confirm that the political pressure on the Commission has increased and that further Commission initiatives could therefore not be ruled out.

At the time of writing, the possible impact of the "Ievoli Sun" incident on the EU processes is still an open question. It is probable, however, that the most significant (and dangerous) development we might now experience is that of the environmental ministers becoming more and more involved with the maritime safety issue, gaining in influence and contributing together with the transport ministers to further action.  There are certainly signs of this happening in France. And at last month's EU Environmental Council Italy argued for a joint transport/environment Council to deal with issue of tanker safety!  In any event we must expect a hardening of positions, not the least in the European Parliament, less patience with "waiting for international solutions" and a speeding up of the process wherever possible. INTERTANKO is, of course actively involved at various levels in these ongoing discussions.