Friday, April 27, 2007

New tool for tracking shipping in the Arabian Gulf

Reported here:
A NEW information centre able to track ships in the Gulf and prevent unlawful activities such as illegal dumping will open before the end of June, it was revealed yesterday.

The Oman-based centre will have offices in every GCC state to share information and enable authorities in each country to know details about the ships that dock at their ports.

General Organisation of Seaports (GOS) maritime affairs director Essa Yateem said that inspectors at each port would send information, such as the amount of oil and cargo carried by ships and whether or not there is a need for repairs, to the central information centre.

"The centre will then pass this on to other ports, enabling the vessels to be tracked port by port," he said.

"If, for example, a ship was found to be in need of certain repairs at one port and for some reason these repairs were not available, it wouldn't be able to bypass the next port because they will already know about it.

"This could prevent serious incidents."

Mr Yateem said that the illegal dumping of oil and wastes into the Gulf waters would also be minimised.

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