On 23rd of June 2020, an online conference "Cooperation on VTMIS and Maritime Surveillance in the South Adriatic Area" was held as part of the SAGOV (South Adriatic Connectivity Governance) project.
Representing the Ministry of Transport and Maritime Affairs, Mrs. Emina Mujević Kara, Director General of the Directorate for International Cooperation and EU Funds, briefed the participants on the current situation in the transport sector and the progress made in the past. Among other things, she pointed out that work is still being done on the implementation of projects from the Single Project Pipeline in the Transport Sector, with the aim of integration with the indicative extension of the TEN-T corridor to the Western Balkans in line with Connectivity agenda.
On behalf of the leading partner in the SAGOV project, the Institute for Cooperation and Development (CDI), Director Ardian Haçkaj addressed the audience and introduced the project, emphasizing that SAGOV promotes integrated management and more efficient decision-making regarding cross-border infrastructure connectivity. At the project level, SAGOV provides innovative solutions and procedures that can be used by all stakeholders in decision-making, in the preparation of joint projects and their implementation in the rest of the EUSAIR region. The coordinator for international policies of the Region of Puglia, Claudio Polignano, also addressed the audience, emphasizing the importance of the project at the level of the Interreg IPA CBC program as well as the quality of the results achieved so far.
In the first part of the conference, the participants were addressed by the representative of the European Commission - DG MOVE Jakob Terling, Edmuns Beliskins from the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) and Nedim Begovic on behalf of the Permanent Secretariat of the Transport Community to talk about success factors transport.
The second part of the conference was dedicated to the VTMIS system and the experiences of countries in the region when it comes to marine surveillance and control. This panel was attended by representatives from the Croatian Ministry of the Sea, Transport and Infrastructure Zdravko Seidel, from the Slovenian Maritime Administration Captain Primoz Bajec and Captain Vladimir Vladovic, from the Albanian Maritime Directorate General Tomor Harizi, from the Italian Coast Guard Marko Tomaino and Nedzad Kapidani as a representative of the Maritime Safety Administration and port management of Montenegro.
The third and final part of the conference was based on current events and institutional knowledge transfer related to the VTMIS system and maritime surveillance. About the maritime traffic management system (eng. Sea Traffic Management (STM) spoke Anders Johanneson of the Swedish Maritime Administration. Captain Joao Piedade from the National Maritime Administration of Portugal presented the COMPASS2020 project, from the Horizon 2020 program, which is implemented in cooperation with NATO and in which the Montenegrin Maritime Safety and Port Management Authority is a partner. Alkis Astjakopoulos spoke on behalf of the Greek Ministry of Civil Protection about the ANDROMEDA project, from the Horizon 2020 program, in which the Montenegrin Maritime Safety and Port Authority is also a partner, and a representative from the private sector from Italy, technical director of ELMAN srl, Pierluigi Flori spoke about MARE∑ system, implemented by his company for needs of EMSA.
After a dynamic discussion on maritime surveillance and protection systems initiated by the participants, the conference came to an end. It was concluded that the knowledge and experience presented by experts from the region and Europe as well as representatives of international organizations dealing with maritime transport will greatly facilitate the work on future projects. On behalf of the Ministry of Transport and Maritime Affairs of Montenegro and on his own behalf, the conference moderator and project manager Đorđije Otašević thanked to all participants with a wish for even better cooperation in this field.