21 June 2006

The Web
Business Today

Maritime surveillance system to cost EUR1.4m

The Malta Maritime Authority is currently implementing a EUR1.4m National Port and Coastal Vessel Traffic Management Information System, which will jointly operated with the Armed Forces of Malta, from the respective control centres in Marsa and Luqa. This project is part of a wider project costing around €3.5m which is being funded by the EU Structural Funds Programme under the European Regional Development Fund as well as by the Malta Maritime Authority.
The entire Vessel Traffic Management Information System (VTMIS) will be used primarily for the monitoring of vessels arriving and departing Maltese ports (including Mgarr and Cirkewwa) and bunkering areas together with vessels operating within coastal waters. In addition it will also be used for border control as well as for search and rescue operations.
The first set of VTS equipment for coastal monitoring, which will be installed around the Maltese coast and at the AFM's Operations Centre at Luqa Head Quarters, has been delivered on 17 May 2006 and is being prepared for installation by Transas UK, the selected contractor. Assembly of this sophisticated equipment will be carried out jointly by the contractor and AFM personnel in the coming weeks.
The project involves the setting up of a network of radars, automatic identification system stations, VHF communications, VHF direction finders and weather stations around the Maltese islands. This system will provide MMA and AFM with the means to monitor and manage, on a 24x7 basis, ports and coastal vessel traffic respectively. Trials will commence in the quarter four of this year with the ports and coastal vessel traffic services to start-up in the beginning of 2007. The project also involves the training of 32 officers.
This surveillance equipment will assist the AFM to monitor Malta’s coastal and territorial waters especially as maritime activity is expected to increase throughout the imminent summer months. The system will help to curtail illegal activities at sea, as well as assist the authorities during search and rescue activities. It is also aimed to enhance the safety and security and increase efficiency of maritime traffic within the ports, approaches and territorial waters of Malta.

Business Today is published weekly on Wednesdays.
Website is updated weekly on Thursdays
Copyright © MediaToday., Malta
Managing Editor - Saviour Balzan
Editor: Kurt Sansone
Business Today, MediaToday, Vjal ir-Rihan, San Gwann
Tel: (356) 2138 2741 | Fax: (356) 2138 5075 | E-mail