Steering Committee Meeting: The Common Maritime Agenda for the Black Sea - 15 December 2022

Author: Black Sea Assistance Mechanism

On 15 December 2022, members of the Steering Committee for the Common Maritime Agenda for the Black Sea met to relaunch regional dialogue and cooperation after almost 10 months of paused activity due to the ongoing war.

Around 50 participants – representing line ministries of the six Black Sea Common Maritime Agenda countries, the European Commission, the Assistance Mechanism for the Black Sea, national hubs and regional partner organisations – participated in the meeting, held in person in Brussels.

One of the key topics for discussion was implementation of the CMA within the context of ongoing crisis in the region. The crisis has affected the ability of CMA countries to implement the Common Maritime Agenda in many sectors. Parties discussed project progress, implementation success and challenges, as well as future plans. Strong commitment to ensuring effectiveness of the CMA, keeping up cooperation between countries, and enhancing regional resilience was expressed.

Efforts are needed to address the consequences of the ongoing war on the fragile Black Sea ecosystems, such as environmental damages and marine pollution. It is important to maintain efforts in the development of CMA and, despite the ongoing crisis in the region, to consider how this framework can still be effective in fostering cooperation on sustainable blue economy projects and policies among the participating countries.

During the meeting, the National Coordinator of Romania accepted the role of CMA Presidency for 2023. As CMA Coordinator, Romania intends to further promote innovation and research for a sustainable blue economy, whilst supporting both the SRIA and the CMA across the region.