Maritime Transport Division is responsible for policy development and implementation in relation to ports, regional harbours, shipping and ship source pollution prevention.
A new National Ports Policy was published in March 2013. The core objective of National Ports Policy is to facilitate a competitive and effective market for maritime transport services.
The Policy Statement reiterated the view that most of these harbours would best achieve their potential through transfer to local authority ownership. Where it is not possible to reach agreement on transfer to local authorities, the option of sale of the harbours will be considered. In harbours where significant commercial traffic exists, consideration will be given to bringing such harbours under the control of a port company.
Since publication of the Ports Policy Statement in 2005 a number of regional harbours have transferred to local authority control and the Department is continuing to work with the Department of Environment Heritage and Local Government to advance the implementation of the Ports Policy Statement with regard to the transfer of the remaining designated regional harbours to their respective local ownership.
The Division is also responsible for the administration of the Remedial Works funding at the Harbours in advance of their transfer.
A full list of regional harbours, including those that have transferred to local authority control is available to view by clicking on the Regional Harbours link on the toolbar.
The Department aims to foster conditions supportive of the development of Irish based ship ownership, ship management and related maritime activities.
The division is also responsible for the provision of supports through annual grants to Shipping organisations and seafarer and WWII pensions.
Attached is the link to The Irish Maritime Development Office which is the Statutory Development Body under the aegis of the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport responsible for the development of the Irish shipping services sector. They also have a role in advising the Minister with regard to shipping policy.
Ship Source Pollution Prevention
Transposition of regulations by the division is necessary on a continual basis to ensure that Ireland complies with EU and international obligations. Major new laws improving the regulation of emissions to air from ships, criminal sanctions for illegal discharges of polluting substances from ships and improvement of vessel traffic monitoring and information (VTM) systems, were implemented in 2010.
Under EU and International Law all Ports, Harbours, Marinas and Local Authorities must have in place and submit to the Department appropriate Port Waste Management Plans every three years. The purpose is to improve the availability and use of port reception facilities for ship-generated waste and cargo residues. The division is responsible for the review and approval of the Port Waste Management Plans.
Administration of Irelands returns to the International Oil Pollution Fund is carried out by the Division.