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The EU's commitment to maritime industries

Maritime industries include both shipbuilding and recreational crafts. These two sectors benefit from EU support for trade, the environment, and for the standardisation of building provisions and administrative procedures.

The difference between these two sectors lies in the purpose of the respective vessels:

  • Shipbuilding (including ship repair and conversion) is directed at the larger (mainly sea-going) vessels, intended for merchant/commercial purposes, but also military vessels. It addresses as well products and services supplied for the building, conversion, and maintenance of these ships (seagoing and inland).
  • The recreational craft sector covers boats of 2.5 to 24m hull length intended for leisure or sport. It addresses mainly the internal market legislation these products have to comply with for their free circulation on the EU market.

What has the EU done for the development of these sectors?

The shipbuilding sector is constantly monitored by the EU Commission from a strategic point of view (see LeaderSHIP2015). Action is taken in cooperation with stakeholders in an effort to further enhance competitiveness and promote the development of the sector.

The recreational craft sector is regulated at EU level in terms of safety and environmental standards, as well as design and production requirements and administrative procedures. The aim is to ensure a sustainable development of the sector from economic, social and environmental points of view.

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