German ports urge elimination of location disadvantages

Tonnage tax also causes fiercer competition among terminal operatiors according to OECD

German ports urge elimination of location disadvantages Bild: ?????????????????????????????????????????

At the annual press conference in Hamburg, the Zentralverband der deutschen Seehafenbetriebe e.V. (ZDS, Central Association of German Seaport Operators) presented its call for more vigorous action to eliminate location disadvantages in Europe. “A recent study by the Federal Ministry of Transport has confirmed the systemic relevance of German ports for the economy. Our ports secure over 521,000 jobs, and seaport operators invest hundreds of millions of euros annually to prepare for the future. Together with the public sector, we will continue to strengthen Germany as a logistics and business location in the face of tough international competition,” said Frank Dreeke, President of ZDS.
Compared to the port locations in Belgium and the Netherlands, there are a number of locational disadvantages which reduce the chances of success of the German seaports. One example is the import turnover tax, which is implemented differently in Germany than in other EU countries. As a result, goods are imported via neighbouring countries.
With the tonnage tax, shipping companies facing tough international competition can significantly reduce their tax burden. The tonnage tax is an important instrument approved by the European Commission for strengthening European shipping. In some neighbouring European countries, however, its application influences competition between terminal operators, as shows a recent report by the International Transport Forum of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).
Frank Dreeke: “In addition to adapting German waterway legislation, the EU Water Framework Directive, which is currently being reviewed, must also be made more concrete in order to shorten procedures and create more legal certainty. The timeframe for the requirements in the Directive currently runs until 2027”. Sustainability is also high on the agenda of seaport operators.