MOST Demands Exclusive Economic Zone in Croatia’s Adriatic Sea

Total Croatia News

ZAGREB, February 19, 2018 – The MOST party on Monday forwarded to parliament for consideration a proposal to declare an exclusive economic zone in the Adriatic which, it said, was not only in Croatia’s interest but in the interest of the entire EU.

“Croatia has the right to declare an exclusive economic zone under the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea from 1982. We have consulted the examples of other countries, and Great Britain and France were the last to do so,” MOST leader Božo Petrov told a news conference.

He said the benefits of declaring an exclusive economic zone would be both economic and environmental. “We should be aware of what this will mean for Croatia in the future – it will protect our national interests and resources for generations to come,” he said.

MOST MP and former environmental protection minister Slaven Dobrović said that the issue primarily concerned the sovereignty of a country with access to the high sea. “It is unusual for Croatia to have an inferiority complex and be unwilling to assume responsibility for what it is fully entitled to under the Convention. The more so as we have a well-developed marine research and protection sector as well as a long fisheries tradition,” said Dobrović.

“The Adriatic Sea is a shallow, landlocked sea where water exchanges occur every 10 years and any major accident would cause huge damage. By assuming responsibility for traffic regulation, tanker washing practices, vessel re-ballasting, the issue of maritime accidents and collection of damages… Croatia can be more actively involved in those processes,” Dobrović said.

Declaring an exclusive economic zone is important for the protection of the Adriatic Sea and its fish stock, for dialogue and cooperation with other Adriatic countries with similar zones and for national interests, the MOST MPs said.

“In 2013, the European Commission advised its members to (declare exclusive economic zones) both for the sake of economic benefits and environmental protection, while a few months ago our government negated an EC study which says that Croatia’s potential benefit from declaring an exclusive economic zone would be between 120 and 130 million euros, and that the country would only have to pay 2.5 to 3 million euros for security and for patrolling the 24,000 square kilometre area,” said Petrov, urging the government to declare the zone and hopeful all MPs would support his party’s proposal.


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