Marine safety proposals hurried forward

European Commission releases shipping safety package; urges fast approval by MEPs, council

EU proposals trailed last week to tighten maritime security in the wake of the Prestige oil spill were confirmed by the European Commission in a communication today. The swiftly produced package of emergency measures will be sent for approval to the European parliament and to the council, which is meeting next week in Copenhagen (EED 27/11/02).

Central to the communication is the publication of a "black list" of 66 substandard ships that would be banned under forthcoming European maritime safety rules proposed in 2000. Such a list was part of a wide-ranging package put together after the sinking of the Erika oil tanker off the French coast in 1999 (EED 22/03/00). The Commission has brought forward its release date from mid-2003.

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