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Black Sea ministers to endorse Common Maritime Agenda

Black Sea ministers to endorse Common Maritime Agenda

Brussels, Belgium, May 21, 2019

Ministers from seven Black Sea countries – Bulgaria, Georgia, the Republic of Moldova, Romania, Russia, Turkey, and Ukraine – are meeting in Bucharest today to endorse the Common Maritime Agenda for the Black Sea. With this, the Black Sea region joins the rest of the sea basins bordering the EU in setting a basin-wide initiative for more, and more sustainable, economic growth.

The Common Maritime Agenda – the first of its kind in the region – is the result of a process initiated and backed by the European Commission. Between 2015 and 2018 alone, the European Union has supported the region’s blue economy, which represents all economic activities related to our oceans, seas or coastal areas, with more than €13 million.

The conference is co-organized by Romania and the European Commission. Its aim is to enable the Black Sea littoral countries and Moldova to adopt a Common Maritime Agenda for the Black Sea at the level of ministers with competences in the field of maritime affairs, in the presence of a high-level representative of the European Commission.

The agenda, which has been negotiated with the support of the European Commission, focuses on fields related to the “blue economy”, which can contribute to the sustainable economic development of the region and especially of the coastal regions (maritime affairs, fisheries and aquaculture, research and innovation, connectivity, environment protection, tourism, education and the development of skills required for a maritime economy).

The adoption of the Common Maritime Agenda is one of the priorities of the Romanian Presidency of the EU Council, within the third pillar – “Europe, as a stronger global actor”.

Karmenu Vella, Commissioner for Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, said: “Today the Black Sea region has taken a step towards a new type of sea basin strategy – one based on workable cross-border projects. This will push the region’s blue economy forward sustainably. The countries that share the shores of the Black Sea can make this a success and the European Commission will continue to offer its full support.”

Black Sea countries will pursue three goals: healthy marine and coastal ecosystems; a competitive, innovative and sustainable blue economy; and fostering investment in the blue economy.

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