Can-Am officials to talk about NA shortsea shipping strategy

OTTAWA — Industry, stakeholders and members of the international community are meeting in Vancouver today and tomorrow for the “North American Marine Conference — Towards a Shortsea Shipping Strategy for the North American Continent.”

“This conference is an excellent opportunity to promote shortsea shipping as a means to improve the performance of the national transportation system and to contribute to environmental sustainability,” said new Transport Minister Lawrence Cannon in a statement. “It will also serve as a public venue to discuss business opportunities and highlight obstacles related to shortsea shipping.”

Transport Canada is hosting this conference in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Transportation and the Secretariat of Communications and Transportation of Mexico. Approximately 250 participants from Canada, the U.S., and Mexico are expected to attend.

The conference represents a commitment among the three nations following the signing of a Memorandum of Cooperation on Shortsea Shipping in 2003 to “increase the security, prosperity and quality of life in North America.”

Shortsea shipping attempts to take trucks off the road by moving cargo or passengers by water over relatively short distances. It can occur within lakes and river systems and along coast lines. It consists mainly of domestic shipping but can also include cross-border traffic. It does not include shipping across the world’s major oceans.

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