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The Italian presidency is committed to take forward the discussion concerning a strategy for safe seas initiated under the Greek Presidency. This is one of the items on the agenda for the next General Affairs Council meetings, the first of which will take place on 29 August.
The figures show that multiple sectors are involved, in fact maritime safety concerns about 90% of the goods exported and 40% of the goods exchanged within the single market travelling by sea. Over 400 million people pass through European ports every year. Such data urges the Union to ensure sea safety and accessibility for a free trade, an efficient transport system and to stimulate tourism, safeguard environmental diversity and economic development.The aim of the strategy on sea safety is to tackle issues related to risks and threats, such as cross-border criminal organizations, effective free navigation and proliferation of weapons of mass destruction or the environmental risk.
The action plan aims at addressing internal and external issues of the EU. It is based on five pillars: intensification of the EU external action; awareness raising and surveillance, capability development of the maritime sector; protection of strategic infrastructures; response to crisis; maritime safety training and research.