Today Spain has no marine spatial plans. Spain has declared an exclusive economic zone in the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea in 2013.

It is creating the authority for marine spatial planning. A Royal Decree is being prepared for the transposition of the Directive 2014/89/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 23 July 2014, establishing a framework for Maritime Spatial Planning, into Spanish legislation. An Inter-Ministerial Commission on Marine Strategies (CIEM) was created in 2012 by Royal Decree. It is the body for coordination between the ministerial departments of the national government.

SpainSpain has limited authority for MSP through its Act on Protection of the Marine Environment (2010) that lays out the general principles and procedures for planning the marine environment and transfers the EU’s Marine Strategy Framework Directive into Spanish legislation. The geographical scope of the law is the internal waters, the territorial sea, the Atlantic exclusive economic zone, the fisheries protection zone in the Mediterranean, and the continental shelf.

A number of initiatives related to MSP (e.g., MPAs, Natura2000, renewable energy) are underway, but so far no multi-sector MSP initiatives have been developed. Spain has designated “go and no-go” areas for offshore wind energy, but, similar to France, it has not yet developed an integrated MSP process. Authority for maritime and coastal affairs is shared between central and regional governments.


Authority:Directive 2014/89/UE
Lead Planning Agency:Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Environment
Financing:Total Funding for Planning: less than US$1,000,000. Sustained Funding for Implementation Not known or approved at this time.
Size of Planning Area:More than 100,000 km2
Time required to complete the plans:More than 4 years
Drivers of MSP:Legal mandate from the EU.
Stakeholder participation:Not specified
Sectors included in planning:Domestic Commercial Fishing; International Commercial Fishing; Recreational Fishing; Artisanal Fishing;
Aquaculture; Marine Transport; Ports; Offshore Renewable Energy; Offshore Oil & Gas;
Mineral Mining/Aggregate Extraction; Recreation & Tourism; Underwater Cultural Heritage; Marine Conservation
Relation to coastal management:Not specified
Relation to marine protected area management:Not specified
Plan approval:Planning to plan, but not yet underway
Legal Status of Plan:Regulatory and enforceable
Plan revision:Not specified
Performance monitoring and evaluation:Not specified