The Twelfth Meeting of the Focal Points of the Regional Marine Pollution Emergency Response Centre for the Mediterranean Sea (REMPEC), Malta, 23-25 May 2017 – May 23, 2017

The Twelfth Meeting of the Focal Points of the Regional Marine Pollution Emergency Response Centre for the Mediterranean Sea (REMPEC) was held in Malta, from 23 to 25 May 2017.

The Meeting brought together representatives of eighteen (18) Contracting Parties to the Barcelona Convention, namely Albania, Algeria, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Croatia, Cyprus, Egypt, European Union, France, Greece, Israel, Italy, Malta, Montenegro, Morocco, Slovenia, Spain,  Tunisia, and Turkey. Also present were representatives from the International Maritime Organization (IMO), the United Nations Environment Programme/Mediterranean Action Plan of the (UN Environment/MAP), the International Maritime Law Institute (IMLI), the International Oil Pollution Compensation Funds (IOPC FUNDS), the Regional Activity Centre for Information and Communication (INFO-RAC), the International Ocean Institute (IOI), the Centre Of Documentation, Research and Experimentation on Accidental Water Pollution (CEDRE), BirdLife, Malta, ENI S.p.a., the International Tanker Owners Pollution Federation Limited (ITOPF), the Sea Alarm Foundation, and Oil Spill Response Limited (OSRL).

The Meeting was opened by the Honorable Mr Joseph Mizzi, Minister for Transport and Infrastructure of Malta, who stressed on the crucial need for collective effort and commitment of the Contracting Parties, international and regional organisations and the industry to protect the Mediterranean environment.

Ms Tatjana Hema, Deputy Coordinator of UN Environment/MAP – Barcelona Convention Secretariat, welcomed the participants and acknowledged the contribution of REMPEC to the implementation of MAP’s six-year Mid Term Strategy (2016-2021), with particular focus on the implementation of the Prevention and Emergency, and Offshore Protocols.

Ms Colleen O’Hagan, Technical Officer, Marine Environment Division, IMO, acknowledged that the valuable work and success of the Centre could not be reached without the collective effort of the Contracting Parties, international organizations as well as the industry and recalled the significant shared responsibility of all towards the protection and preservation of the Mediterranean Sea and its common heritage whilst reminding the Meeting that the Mediterranean Sea remains one of the most important maritime highways, placing it under high stress.

The Meeting examined the implementation of the programme of work of the Centre since the last Meeting of the Focal Points of REMPEC, held in Malta from 15 to 17 June 2015. It also went through the accomplishment of the Centre since the last Meeting, whereby most of the twenty-two (22) specific objectives set in the Regional Strategy (2016-2021) had been addressed.

The main outcome of the meeting included amongst others, the endorsement of the draft Mediterranean Guide on cooperation and mutual assistance in responding to marine pollution incidents, including the Mediterranean ‘Principles and Guidelines on Cooperation and Mutual Assistance’, the draft Guidance Document for the preparation of National Action Plans (NAPs) for the implementation of the Regional Strategy for Prevention of and Response to Marine Pollution from Ships (2016-2021) and the proposed Programme of Work of REMPEC for the biennium 2018-2019.

More information and links to the Meeting's documentation are available through the following link.