Maritime security: the European Commission takes Spain to court over the security of its ports


European Commissionspain-state-flag-210-pThe European Commission is taking action against Spain before the Court of Justice of the European Union, because 20 Spanish ports have yet to adopt and implement the port security plan.

The main objective of European port security policy is to provide protection for ships and port facilities, as part of the maritime link in the transport logistics chain, against the risk of attacks and terrorism. Directive 2005/65/EC on enhancing port security aims to guarantee uniformly high levels of security in all European ports, in particular by implementing a port security plan laying down provisions for ensuring port security.

Since 15 June 2007, the deadline for transposing the Directive, the Commission has regularly carried out port security inspections in order to verify, among other things, that its application is being monitored. The Commission has asked Member States with the greatest delays in meeting their obligations, including Spain, to prepare national action plans with precise time-frames for conducting assessments and drawing up port security plans.

The Spanish authorities have launched an action plan with all the relevant national and local authorities in order to implement, within a reasonable period of time, the provisions of the Directive in all Spanish ports. Despite significant efforts, the deadline set for the end of 2013 in the action plan could not be met, and the Spanish authorities still need to adopt about 20 port security plans.

Source: European Commission press release

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