Lobby horse

A new representative organisation, the European Leisure Marine Industries Federation, has been created to ensure one voice is representing the European leisure marine industry in Brussels.

The British Marine Federation (BMF), the UK trade association for leisure marine, has played a leading role in the creation of this new group. After two years of negotiation, it brings together the European Union Recreational Marine Industry Group (EURMIG) which was formed in 2003 and the European Confederation of Nautical Industries (ECNI), set up in 2004. Both bodies included associations belonging to the states of the European Union and EEA. This new body will bring them together to provide a stronger, more cohesive representation on European issues.

The new lobbying body will continue to promote understanding of the sector and provide a platform for the industry to represent mutual European interests and to lobby the European institutions. 13 countries have become founding members of the European Leisure Marine Industries Federation.

The stand-alone organisation will be guided by an elected Council of nine representatives and the UK is represented by Jon Eads of MDL Marinas Ltd, the current BMF President; the Council’s first task will be to appoint a full-time Secretary General who will be based in Brussels. The new organisation will enter into a Service Level Agreement with ICOMIA to ensure close cooperation with the industry’s international body.

Rob Stevens, Chief Executive of the British Marine Federation said: “The BMF has played a leading role in the creation of this new lobbying group and so we are delighted to see it finally launched after two years of negotiation with our counterparts across Europe. It is vital for the leisure marine industry to have the strongest possible representation within the European Union at this critical time in such a tough economic climate. I am confident ELMIF will deliver much needed results for the industry.”

The European Leisure Marine Industries Federation was officially launched on Friday 5 June 2009 at its first meeting, which took place in Lisbon as part of the ICOMIA Annual Congress.