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Assessing EMSA Activities

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In accordance with Article 22 of Regulation (EC) No 1406/2002 establishing a European Maritime Safety Agency, the Administrative Board would “within five years from the date of the Agency having taken up its responsibilities,(…) commission an independent external evaluation on the implementation of this Regulation.”

It was decided that a working group to carry out this task would be set up at the November 2006 meeting of the Administrative Board. It would be made up of Francis Vallat, France, Chairman of the working group; Markku Mylly, Finland; Klaus Grensemann, Germany; Cmdr. Agisilaos Anastasakos H.C.G., Greece; Paul Gelton, Netherlands; Christos Economou, European Commission; Brian Wadsworth, United Kingdom (for the final report and recommendations) and James Wood, EMSA, acting as the working group coordinator.

The evaluation covered the impact of EMSA's founding Regulation, the Agency and its working practices. This involved a wide stakeholder consultation addressing relevant government departments of EU Member States; third countries; labour organisations; industry associations; NGOs; Members of the European Parliament, the European Commission and EMSA staff.

The overall outcome of the evaluation report was positive and demonstrated that the Agency has added value to the sector in general and in particular to its main stakeholders, the Member States and the Commission. This evaluation reflected the efforts of the Executive Director and his staff but it also showed the level of commitment of EMSA's Administrative Board.

The report contained a number of recommendations, which the Administrative Board discussed and adopted. These can be summarised as follows:

I. Changes to Regulation (EC) No 1406/2002: amend Article 22 of the founding Regulation to provide for regular evaluations of the implementation of the regulation (every five years)

II. Recommendations related to the Agency and its working practices

  • Continue to focus on activities which add value for its stakeholders
  • Develop a strategic plan covering a five year perspective
  • Continue in the efforts towards activity-based costing and budgeting
  • Structure the annual work programme to function as an operational action plan for the given year
  • Develop the annual report to reflect actual achievements met against the target set
  • Develop project management capacity

III. Other/general recommendations

  • Ensure formal, periodic reviews of EMSA's effectiveness.

The remaining recommendations considered relevant for the continued successful functioning of EMSA were of an internal nature. Furthermore, it was suggested that the Agency report on trends observed in the course of its activities, so as to provide an overview of the functioning and evolution of the maritime world to stakeholders. It was agreed that an update on the implementation of the recommendations would be presented at future meetings of the Administrative Board by the Executive Director. As foreseen by Article 22 of Regulation (EC) No 1406/2002, these recommendations, together with the evaluation findings, would be forwarded by the European Commission to the European Parliament and the Council, and made public.

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