WSC to open office in Brussels; won’t be involved in antitrust issues
The World Shipping Council said Thursday that it would open an office in Brussels, Belgium in September to working on security and customs issues arising from legislation developed by the European Community.
“The security, Customs and related issues facing the liner shipping industry that are arising from the (EC’s) regulations and policy decisions continue to increase in scope, complexity and importance,” said Adolf Adrion, chairman of the World Shipping Council and chief executive officer of Hapag-Lloyd Container Lines. “A WSC office in Brussels will improve the liner industry’s ability to be of assistance to the European institutions and to keep its member companies informed of these developments.”
The new Brussels office will be lead by Senior Vice President Lars Kjaer, who has been with the World Shipping Council since its establishment in 2000 and has provided expertise to council members on European issues for some time.
“The implementation of a new Modernized Customs Code, and the coming into force of the Authorized Economic Operator program and advance shipment data filing requirements are just some of the European initiatives that will directly impact the liner shipping industry,” Kjaer said in a statement. “A WSC office in Brussels will allow our industry to further develop its relationship with the European institutions, building on the constructive dialogue we already have.”
The council’s Brussels office will continue its close and cooperative relationship with the European Community Shipowners’ Association (ECSA), also based in Brussels. But the WSC will not be involved in the ongoing discussions between the liner shipping industry and the European Commission with respect to competition law issues following the repeal of the liner industry’s block exemption under Regulation 4056. This issue will continue to be handled by the European Liner Affairs Association.