Economic Affairs

The following management tasks related to use of the North Sea are the responsibility of the Ministry of Economic Affairs.

Directorate-General Energy, Telecom and Competition (ETM)

Grants permits for oil and gas extraction and is involved in the large-scale development of wind-generated energy on the North Sea.

Schelpenwining in de Waddenzee

State Supervision of Mines (SodM)

One of SodM’s tasks is to ensure that the extraction and transport of gas and/or oil are implemented properly. This task is implemented in the framework of the WFD by monitoring compliance with the statutory regulations for the detection, extraction, storage and transport of minerals.
Particularly the aspects of safety, health, environment, effective extraction and the related soil movements are important here. SodM monitors compliance with the statutory regulations for the detection and extraction of minerals and the transport and distribution of gas through pipelines. Collisions between production and drilling platforms are one of the major risks for safety and the environment when extracting oil and gas on the North Sea. The implementation of these activities is supervised. In addition, SodM is charged with the task of enforcing/supervising the discharge regulations and detecting accidents at work on drilling platforms and offshore wind farms.

Directorate-General for Nature and the Region

Is responsible for the achievement of the international biodiversity objective in the Dutch part of the North Sea. The organisation does this by implementing the Birds and Habitats Directive into Dutch legislation and declaring the Nature Conservation Act applicable within the EEZ. In addition, the DG designates protected marine areas in pursuance of the OSPAR Convention.

Directorate-General Agriculture

Develops policy that focuses on responsible fishery, balanced exploitation of fish stocks and a good balance between the fishing industry and natural values. It does this in close cooperation with the partners in the European Fishery Policy and with stakeholders in the sector.

Netherlands Food and Consumer Product Safety Authority (NVWA)

The NVWA monitors the implementation of fishing at sea and in the coastal areas. Legislation for the marine fishing industry is based on the Common Fisheries Policy that has been worked out in a number of detailed EU regulations. The European fishery policy is aimed at preventing overfishing and at generating healthy fish stocks. Firstly, sustainable management is based on the definition of an annual fish quota, linked to the need for an accurate catch registration. The second component involves regulating the way fishing is carried out at sea, with, for example, stipulations for the maximum permitted engine capacity and the fishing gear and fishing method used.
Professional fishermen must therefore comply with the European fishery regulations on the North Sea. In Dutch coastal waters and inland waters, national regulations also apply, also for anglers. The organisation operates largely on the basis of regulations and international agreements (treaties). It also works intensively together with the national and international enforcement partners.