We also celebrate the first ever Bulgarian EU Presidency this year. The OCEAN Board took the occasion, for the first time, to meet in Sofia, on Friday, 27th April 2018. We are proud of our members, the Българската Асоциация на Корабните Снабдители, the Bulgarian Ship Suppliers Association, and look forward to an exciting meeting.
However, challenges for OCEAN are also on the horizon! While harmonised customs rules are the intention and the end-goal, the way to get there is still to be discovered. EU Member States have created national ship supply rules which cause some headaches to our members. National Single Windows seem to contradict the idea of a one-stop-shop and special procedures and processes, existing only in one Member State and not in the other, distort a genuine EU Single Market which works for the ship supply industry as a whole.
Brexit is yet another challenge, with 2018 hopefully bringing much needed clarity on the future relationship and any transitional period. There are other legislative developments, which will be progressing this year, from the recast to the EU Dual Use Regulation to the Reporting formalities for ships (European Maritime Single Window environment).
The agenda is full, but members are energised and ready to work. All aboard! Welcome to 2018!