Below is the text of the statement made by Nusrat Ghani, the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Transport, in the House of Commons on 2 July 2019.
I am delighted to inform the House today about the launch of Maritime Safety Week 2019 following the extremely successful inaugural event last year.
The maritime industry is crucial to the UK economy. It is a simple truth that, if safety were not a priority for the sector, it would rapidly grind to a halt.
The UK is recognised internationally for its world-class maritime safety framework and already sets the standard in ensuring the wide variety of people who use and enjoy our waters for business or pleasure can do so in safety. It is not only Government who have achieved this reputation, through the work of organisations like the Maritime and Coastguard Agency and the general lighthouse authorities, but also sector bodies like the Royal National Lifeboat Institution.
The marine environment can be dangerous, however, and there is always more that can be done to keep people out of harm’s way.
Maritime Safety Week aims ultimately to help reduce preventable maritime accidents. The week creates a focal point to recognise the fantastic and innovative work that is already being delivered and the strong partnership between Government and the sector which is vital for further continuous improvement.
As well as recognising the excellent safety work that already goes on, my key objectives for maritime safety week 2019 are to facilitate the sharing of knowledge, experience and best practice and to focus on some of the challenges which remain. That is why, as well as meeting many of the organisations and individuals who make a difference through their work, I will be hosting a fishing safety MP roundtable this week to consider what more can be done to make the fishing industry a safer one.
Throughout the week I will be launching new initiatives and announcing new funding in support of maritime safety. Today I will also be publishing the Government’s first maritime safety action plan. This sets out a path for the future of maritime safety work in the UK, makes new commitments and specifies the actions which will be taken to deliver them. The action plan underpins our Maritime 2050 strategy, which I published in January, outlining our ambitious vision for the future of the sector. Copies of the maritime safety action plan have been placed in the Libraries of both Houses and are available on gov.uk.
Ultimately, I want to reduce the number of preventable accidents in UK waters and Maritime Safety Week 2019 is an important step towards that goal. I invite Members to show their support on social media by sharing our content and using our hashtags for the week—#MaritimeSafetyWeek and #MaritimeSafetyMatters.
The attachment can be viewed online at http://www. parliament.uk/business/publications/written-questions-answers-statements/written-statement/Commons/2019-07-01/HCWS1679.