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Maritime safety: European Maritime Safety Agency

The European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) ensures a high, uniform and effective level of maritime safety and maritime security, the prevention of pollution and response to pollution caused by ships in the European Union (EU). It is important to take the necessary measures to ensure the safety of EU shipping and EU ports against the threats of intentional unlawful acts.

ACT

Regulation (EC) No 1406/2002 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 27 June 2002 establishing a European Maritime Safety Agency [See amending acts].

SUMMARY

This regulation establishes a European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) which provides European Union (EU) countries and the Commission with technical and scientific assistance to ensure the proper application of EU legislation in the field of maritime safety, monitor its implementation and evaluate its effectiveness.

The EMSA is responsible for:

  • assisting the Commission in updating, developing and effectively implementing EU legislation in the field of maritime safety and maritime security, the prevention of pollution and response to pollution caused by ships;
  • working with the EU countries to organise, where appropriate, relevant training activities and provide them with technical assistance in implementing EU legislation;
  • providing the Commission and the EU countries with objective, reliable and comparable information and data on maritime safety through the collection, recording and evaluation of technical data in the fields of maritime safety, maritime traffic and marine pollution by means of the systematic exploitation of existing databases and, where appropriate, the development of additional databases;
  • assisting the Commission in the publication, every six months, of information relating to ships that have been refused access to EU ports, and assisting the EU countries in their activities to improve the identification and pursuit of ships making unlawful discharges;
  • undertaking tasks relating to the surveillance of navigation and maritime traffic pursuant to Directive 2002/59/EC in order to facilitate cooperation between the EU countries and the Commission in this field;
  • developing a common methodology for investigating maritime accidents in cooperation with the Commission and the EU countries;
  • providing countries applying for EU accession with technical support in implementing EU legislation in the field of maritime safety, including the organisation of appropriate training activities.

The EMSA is an EU body and has legal personality. At the request of the Commission, and with the agreement of the EU countries concerned, the EMSA may decide to establish the regional centres needed to carry out tasks relating to the monitoring of navigation and maritime traffic and, in particular, to ensure optimum traffic conditions in sensitive areas. The EMSA is represented by its Executive Director.

The EMSA’s staff consists of EU officials and EU countries’ civil servants temporarily assigned or seconded to the EMSA, and other servants recruited by the EMSA.

The EMSA’s Administrative Board is made up of one representative from each EU country, four representatives from the Commission and four professionals from the sectors most concerned. The latter are appointed by the Commission and do not have the right to vote. The term of office is five years and is renewable once.

The Executive Director of the EMSA is completely independent in the performance of his/her duties, without prejudice to the respective competencies of the Commission and the Administrative Board. He/she acts as EMSA manager and, to this end, is responsible for preparing and implementing the budget and work programme and for all matters relating to staff. The Executive Director of the EMSA is appointed by the Administrative Board for a term of five years, renewable once.

The EMSA’s budget consists, for the most part, of a contribution from the EU and from any non-EU country which participates in the work, and, secondly, of charges for publications, training and any other service provided by the EMSA. Financial control is ensured by the Financial Controller of the Commission.

Within five years of the date on which the EMSA takes up its responsibilities, the Administrative Board is to commission an independent external evaluation of the implementation of the regulation.

Non-EU countries wishing to participate in the EMSA must adopt and apply EU law in all fields of competence of the EMSA.

REFERENCES

Act Entry into force Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal

Regulation (EC) No 1406/2002

25.8.2002

-

OJ L 208, 5.8.2002

Amending act(s) Entry into force Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal

Regulation (EC) No 1644/2003

1.10.2003

-

OJ L 245, 29.9.2003

Regulation (EC) No 724/2004

19.5.2004

-

OJ L 129, 29.4.2004

Regulation (EC) No 2038/2006

31.12.2006

-

OJ L 394, 30.12.2006

The successive amendments and corrections made to Regulation (EC) No 1406/2002 have been incorporated into the basic text. This consolidated version is for reference purposes only.

RELATED ACTS

Directive 2009/16/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 23 April 2009 on port State control [Official Journal L 131 of 28.5.2009].

Directive 2005/35/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 7 September 2005 on ship-source pollution and on the introduction of penalties, including criminal penalties, for pollution offences [Official Journal L 255 of 30.9.2005].

Directive 2002/59/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 27 June 2002 establishing a Community vessel traffic monitoring and information system and repealing Council Directive 93/75/EEC [Official Journal L 208 of 5.8.2002].

Last updated: 10.01.2012

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