Every now and then articles appear, proclaiming a diminution of small barges, because of a lack of new inflow and an increase of new (-construction) technical demands. The ELV offers practical support to starters and stimulates innovations.
Our organization participates in congresses, seminars and other events aiming at the preservation of a diversified inland fleet. For (new) entrepreneurs interested in operating a small barge, ELV has published the brochure 'Kies voor een spits… en neem zelf het roer in handen' ('Choose for a spits... and be at the helm'). This folder was released at the Construction and Shipping Industry exhibition. This year the ELV exhibition stand attracted again many visitors with an interest for inland shipping in France.
In addition to that, some ELV members are, on an individual base, ready to provide future colleagues with information and advice. In this way, several serious candidates have already attended a work experience on board. Currently, almost 25% percent of the ELV members are newcomers, both young entrepreneurs and lateral entries.
Ships belonging to retiring ELV adherents also rarely disappear out of the market. Moreover, two adherent vessels have been completely reconstructed, in an extraordinary, phased way, from spitses to Canal du Nord vessels.
The ELV is also involved in innovative technical projects, varying from new-construction small barges from composite materials to innovatory propulsion techniques and information technologies. The adherent enterprises are informed about the latest developments by means of guest speakers at our meetings, as well a by member-pages of this website, an online knowledge bank and a mailing-list.
More information on these subjects can be found at 'Press survey'.