Press digest

2020 July 30

Cyprus Names New Shipping Deputy Minister

Vassilios Demetriades has been appointed as Cyprus' new Shipping Deputy Minister, the country's president Nicos Anastasiades announced as part of a cabinet reshuffle. The seasoned maritime policy expert, known for his extensive work within the shipping industry and contributions to the European Union (EU), joins the Cyprus Shipping Deputy Ministry effective July 10.

Since the ministry's inception in March 2018, the Cyprus flag has grown to become the 11th largest merchant fleet worldwide and the third largest fleet in the European Union. Cyprus now flags more than 1,100 oceangoing vessels with a total gross tonnage exceeding 24 million. Shipping revenues represent 7% of Cyprus’ GDP and the sector employs approximately 3% of the country’s gainfully employed population.

Demetriades emphasized his commitment to building on these strong foundations: “Our ultimate goal is to continue growing Cyprus shipping and further develop our maritime cluster and flag. This will be achieved through the promotion of the Cyprus flag, continuous updating, simplification and modernization of the relevant legislative framework to address the current and future challenges, quality improvements to the services we provide, and strengthening the collaboration with our stakeholders across the public and private sectors.

“The shipping industry faces many challenges on a European and global level. Effective cooperation and collaboration between regulators and the industry lies at the heart of ensuring we are building a better, more sustainable future for shipping. I hope that my experience from previous roles in working with the EU towards enhancing the competitiveness of the sector and in promoting the benefits of a digital and environmentally sustainable future will support Cyprus’ continuing role in shaping progress.”

For the past five years, Demetriades worked as a policy officer in the Directorate General of Mobility and Transport of the European Commission, coordinating the EU maritime transport strategy and its revision as well as the EU’s external maritime transport relations. Prior to this, he was Head of the EU Affairs Unit at Cyprus' Ministry of Transport, Communications and Works, which was in charge of shipping and integrated maritime policy at the time, and also served in various other positions for the Cyprus Public Administration.