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Introduction

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Chapter Summary

The European Community (EC), for legal and political reasons, has never established a comprehensive policy on “oceans and seas” as it has done in other environmental areas. Instead of adopting its own rules and standards, the Community has traditionally relied upon the existing international regime and has acceded, next to its member states, to the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (LOSC) and most of the global and regional agreements implementing the Convention in European seas. In their mutual relations, the division of competences between the Community and the member states is regulated by EC law. The European Court of Justice (ECJ) doctrine has been developed in relation to commercial and association agreements and its application is difficult with regard to marine environmental Conventions, which have different characteristics.

Keywords: European Community (EC); European Court of Justice (ECJ); European seas; LOSC; marine environmental Conventions; member states

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