The SAFEMED project for Euro-Mediterranean Co-operation on Maritime Safety and Prevention of Pollution from Ships was launched on 30 November 2005 at the headquarters of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) in London. SAFEMED is a €4 million EU-funded regional project established, which is to be implemented by the IMO-administered Regional Marine Pollution Emergency Response Centre for the Mediterranean Sea (REMPEC).
SAFEMED will focus on:
- flag State implementation and monitoring of classification societies;
- safety of navigation and traffic monitoring;
- protection of the marine environment;
- human element issues; and
- security of ships and port facilities.
REMPEC representatives outlined the main features of the project at the launch, which was attended by representatives of IMO, EU Member States, the European Commission (EC) and beneficiary countries. The Project will be implemented by REMPEC during 2006–2008 in ten Mediterranean Partner countries - Algeria, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, the Palestinian Authority, Syria, Tunisia and Turkey - under the overall co-ordination of the EC and with technical backstopping from IMO.
The primary objective of the SAFEMED project is to harmonize the application of maritime legislation in the region between the Mediterranean Partners that are not members of the EU, and those that are members, through promoting coherent, effective and uniform implementation of the relevant international conventions and rules aimed at better protection of the marine environment in the Mediterranean region. Specific activities under SAFEMED will include training courses and seminars, needs’ assessment, capacity building, preparing for the voluntary IMO Member State audit scheme and establishment and maintenance of a dedicated SAFEMED website.