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EC delegates in Cyprus draft Green Paper on Maritime
2006-09-28 09:40:08

Limassol, Sep 28 -- A Green Paper called ?Towards a Future Maritime Policy for the Union: A European vision for the oceans and the seas? which aims to achieve a better and more effective use of the oceans and the seas in a sustainable manner was drafted in Limassol, Cyprus.

Mr. John Richardson, Head of Maritime Policy Task Force of the European Commission told journalists at the end of a workshop held in Limassol, that his department is ?interested in listening to the views of the Cyprus government and stakeholders interested in the sea in Cyprus, because Cyprus is a very special country with respect to the sea?.

?Every Cypriot lives within less than 50 km of the sea, so it is a country which can tell us a lot which policies ought to be followed? since it has a lot of experience in shipping and fisheries and dealing with constant tourism and maintaining the quality of life in the seas and oceans and around the coast of the island, he also said.

Addressing the workshop, Cyprus Minister of Communications and Works Haris Thrasou told workshop delegates that the government has welcomed the European Commission?s decision to draw up a Green Paper on maritime policy and has contributed positively to this process.

?The Green Paper, through a series of questions, seeks to identify the best method to approach the matter holistically?, the Minister said, noting that Cyprus, being an island state, whose economy depends greatly on the supply of services, with a merchant fleet in excess of 21 million GRT, is the outermost border of the EU in the eastern part of the Mediterranean sea.

The Minister also said that Cyprus is neighbored only by third countries and its long standing cooperation with developing countries can undoubtedly play an important role within the EU when it comes to striking a balance between various and sometimes conflicting interests.

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