European maritime surveillance needs greater integration
In a report published today, the European Commission takes the first step towards establishing a comprehensive strategy for integrated maritime surveillance for Europe. The report, in the form of a Commission Staff Working Document, describes the current state of play as regards the surveillance, monitoring, tracking, identification and reporting systems put in place by EU Member States and EU Agencies. It also identifies the next steps to be undertaken and the challenges to be resolved in order to achieve an integrated maritime surveillance network for Europe. Such an integrated and cross-sectoral network would provide essential added value for national authorities in handling a range of challenges, such as trafficking in drugs, arms and people, illegal fisheries, pollution, piracy and terrorism. Greater systems integration would also help national authorities in charge of surveillance operations become more efficient and reduce their operating costs over time.