A. EU issues of direct relevance

Our action in Brussels widely supported by members in boot Düsseldorf
On 24 January 2011, European Boating Industry held an extraordinary meeting of the Assembly General in boot Düsseldorf. With 15 national associations present (out of 17 members), the meeting confirmed the importance of EU affairs in the boating industry’s life. President Fritz Conyn presented his report on the activities carried out in 2010, while the accounts for 2010 and the budget for 2011 were adopted. The outline of the 2011 work programme of European Boating Industry promises work on a series of interesting and important files.

The revision of the EU recreational craft directive will enter a new phase with debates expected to start in spring in the European Parliament and the Council of Ministers. The question of boat’s end-of-life will get higher on the European Commission’s agenda. A series of EU rules is coming under revision, such as waste reception facilities in marinas; the requirements for lifejackets, buoyancy aids and diving equipment; and the requirements for radio equipment. European Boating Industry will also look into the current rules for safety equipment onboard. Regarding navigation, the discussion will develop on boater’s qualifications in Europe while European Boating Industry will closely monitor the Commission’s initiatives on EU borders since these may have a possible impact on the freedom of navigation in Europe. The EU strategy on coastal and marine tourism where boating should play a central role is under preparation in 2011, while the questions of concessions and holiday packages will be under EU scrutiny. A couple of business issues will be of particular interest to the industry, such as the consolidated corporate tax base for companies operating cross-border in Europe, VAT-related issues and an EU law harmonising consumer’s rights throughout Europe. Last but not least, attention will be given to professional qualifications and their recognition across Europe, as well as the negotiations on the maritime social agenda for the superyacht segment.

In terms of communication, the periodic News Alert will continue. Please let us know if you want to be added to our mailing list. A short movie explaining our action and role in Brussels should also help familiarizing boating professionals with EU affairs. Finally we remain at your disposal for ideas and questions throughout the year.

To learn more about our achievements in 2010, please see:

Members can access all relevant documents on the Member’s Area of the website using their login / password.

Industry successful in cutting EU anti-dumping duties on Chinese fibreglass
European Boating Industry, together with other industry sectors such as the composite, plastics and wind energy industries, proved to be successful in cutting the provisional EU anti-dumping duties of 43.6% on Chinese fibreglass imports down to 13.8%. This drastic reduction by 2/3 of the provisional duties illustrates the scepticism of both user industries and a large number of Member States regarding the justifications for such anti-dumping duties. Several members like ANEN in Spain, British Marine Federation in UK, BVWW in Germany, POLBOAT in Poland and UCINA Confindustria Nautica in Italy took active steps towards their governments in challenging the proposed duties.

On 20 January 2011, only 4 Member States voted in favour of the newly proposed 13.8% definitive anti-dumping duties but due to an astonishing number of abstentions (from 14 Member States), the new measures were carried. It is most likely that this decision will be endorsed by the Council of Ministers in February, with an entry into effect on 17 March 2011. The definitive anti-dumping duties of 13.8% will apply to imports from China of fibreglass strands, rovings and mats, while yarns are now excluded from scope. This definitive regime will be in place for the next 5 years.

More on our press release:

Lifejackets: Towards a European position of manufacturers
As you may know, the EU directive on personal protective equipment 89/686/EC which sets the requirements for lifejackets, buoyancy aids, harnesses and diving equipment will start to be revised in 2011. A first meeting of European lifejacket manufacturers took place on 24 January in boot Düsseldorf. The conclusions of this meeting will serve as start point to achieve a European position on all aspects of the directive, which will be then presented to the European Commission. If you wish to participate in this exercise, please contact your national association or the Secretariat at

The new directive on industrial emissions does not modify VOC rules
On 17 December 2010, the new EU directive 2010/75/EU on industrial emissions was adopted. This text is a consolidation of several sectoral directives into a single text. The directive 99/13/EC regulating the emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOC) was merged into the new text but without seeing its requirements and thresholds for VOC emissions modified (threshold values outlined in Annex VII, page L334/77). The other purpose for this new text is to clarify the requirements for installation’s environmental permits and the application of best available techniques in an attempt to reduce pollution from industrial activities.

Link to the directive’s text in all EU languages:

B. Other EU developments

Commission announces future actions on maritime spatial planning
On 17 December 2010, the European Commission presented a communication (non-legislative text) on the achievements and future developments of maritime spatial planning in Europe. In 2008, some 10 key principles for maritime spatial planning in Europe were adopted to provide the basis for a common approach by Member States, especially when it comes to cross-border marine areas. The conclusions of this new communication show that the current developments by Member States are following different paths and time scales. A more coherent framework, especially within sea basins (like the Baltic, North, Black and Mediterranean Seas, the Atlantic Ocean), would significantly improve the potential value of maritime spatial planning for the EU as a whole. A common approach would help sustainable growth of economic activities like boating, and also bring legal certainty, predictability and transparency for the companies and investors. In 2011, the European Commission will explore a range of options for EU action.

More about maritime spatial planning on

What is maritime spatial planning?
Maritime spatial planning is the process by which maritime space is allocated between multiple and potentially competing uses (fishing, shipping, offshore windfarms, boating, marine life, etc). It is thus fully cross-sectoral, ensuring the protection of vulnerable marine ecosystems and guaranteeing the sustainable exploitation of marine resources. Its goal is to make sea use more sustainable, more rational, more transparent and more predictable in line with the main goals of the European integrated maritime policy. A number of European countries like The Netherlands, Germany, Sweden, Norway, Finland, UK and Ireland started including elements of maritime spatial planning in their various national laws.

C. Make your voice heard – Open EU consultations

Public Consultation on the Recognition of Professional Qualifications Directive
This consultation is gathering stakeholders’ views on a modernisation of the Professional Qualifications Directive (Directive 2005/36/EC). This Directive sets the rules for mutual recognition of professional qualifications between Member States. Beyond a few innovations, it is mainly the consolidation of 15 previous texts, some of which dated back to the 1960s. The reform of the system of recognition of professional qualifications as a means to facilitate mobility is one of the priority actions proposed by the Commission in the Single Market Act. The main objective is to consult stakeholders on three major challenges for the reform of the system of recognition of professional qualifications:

  • Simplifying the existing rules to the benefit of individual citizens;
  • Integrating professions into the Single Market;
  • Injecting more confidence into the system.

More on

Deadline for answers is 15 March 2011

Green paper on the future of VAT
A consultation is open until 31 May 2011 on the future of VAT. Value added tax (VAT) constitutes a major source of revenue for national budgets of the Member States of the European Union. However, the VAT system, which is based on legislation adopted at European level and applied at national level, suffers from numerous shortcomings, which do not make it fully efficient and compatible with the requirements of a true single market. The Green Paper covers in particular the treatment of cross border supplies, as well as other key issues addressing tax neutrality, the degree of harmonisation required in the single market and reducing ”red tape” whilst ensuring VAT revenues for Member States.

More on

Deadline for answers is 31 May 2011

Consultation on the Single Market Act
The European Commission adopted the Single Market Act on 27 October 2010. It consists of 50 policy proposals that are being submitted to public debate for a four-month period running up to 28 February 2011. Following this, the Commission will propose to seal the commitment of the other Institutions on a final version of the Single Market Act.

More on

Deadline for answers is 28 February 2011

D. Calendar

21-22 February 2011 EU Sport Forum – Budapest
29 March 2011 Committee of Executives – FIN office, Paris
30 March 2011 Council meeting – FIN office, Paris
19-20 May 2011 European Maritime Day – Gdansk, Poland
11 June 2011 Assembly General – Rotterdam, The Netherlands

You can find the list of boat shows organised by our members in Europe on our website under Calendar.

European Boating Industry
Rue d’Idalie 9-13, 1050 Bruxelles (Belgium)
T +32 / 2 639 62 57 – F +32 / 2 644 90 17