On 28 September 2023, Zagreb hosted the 4th Joint Meeting of the bodies responsible for inspecting inland navigation vessels. This meeting, facilitated by the European Committee for drawing up Standards in the Field of Inland Navigation (CESNI), built upon the momentum of previous meetings held in Budapest (2008), Wroclaw (2012), and Vienna (2018).

The meeting resonated with a collective aspiration to solidify the European Standard Laying down Technical Requirements for Inland Navigation vessels (ES-TRIN). This standard stands paramount in unifying regulatory frameworks across Europe, particularly along the essential Rhine and Danube waterways, and in advancing the environmental sustainability of the European inland waterway fleet.

As adeptly chaired by Mr. Ruben Lindemann from the German delegation to CESNI, the meeting gathered over 80 experts from 13 CESNI Member States. Participants, which included an Observer State, a representative from the European Commission, classification societies, industry associations, and river commissions, engaged in constructive discussions centred on the practical application of technical requirements for inland waterway vessels in Europe.

The diligent efforts across the three-day conference culminated in providing comprehensive answers to 38 questions pre-submitted by experts regarding the ES-TRIN application. Following validation by the relevant CESNI bodies, these enlightening responses will be made accessible via the “ES-TRIN-faq” database.

The conscientious implementation of ES-TRIN remains indispensable for sustaining elevated safety standards, mitigating environmental impact, fostering innovation, and guaranteeing equitable inland navigation conditions across Europe. The indispensable role of the inspection body experts, in ensuring the effective application of these standards, is emphatically underscored.

The meeting also served as a beneficial platform for enlightening experts on the modus operandi of CESNI, the evolution of international regulatory frameworks, and the introduction of new mandates with ES-TRIN 2023/1, which will become legally binding in January 2024 through a delegated act of the EU and a resolution of the Central Commission for the Navigation of the Rhine (CCNR).

For more detailed insights, explore the CESNI press release