European Sea Ports Organisation

About ESPO

ESPO is the European Sea Ports Organisation. ESPO is the principal interface between European seaports and the European institutions and its policy makers. ESPO represents the port authorities, port associations and port administrations of the seaports of 23 Member States of the European Union and Norway at EU political level. ESPO also has observer members in Iceland and Israel.


ESPO’s objectives

Based in Brussels since its establishment in 1993, the European Sea Ports Organisation ensures that seaports have a clear voice in the European Union. ESPO represents the common interests and promotes the common views and values of its members to the European institutions and its policy makers.

  • ESPO assists its members in gaining a better understanding of policy initiatives of importance to the sector.
  • ESPO assists European policy makers in better understanding the role and importance of port authorities, based both on its extensive knowledge of the sector and on reliable information and data.
  • ESPO is also engaged in a continuous dialogue with all European stakeholders in the port and maritime sector.
  • Finally, over the years, ESPO has turned into a unique knowledge network of European port authorities.


ESPO’s aspirations for Navigating a Changing Climate

Overall awareness of climate change is relatively high amongst ESPO’s membership. Energy consumption has been identified as number 2 environmental priority of the sector for 2016 and around half of ESPO’s members calculate and report on their carbon footprint. Ports get their license to operate and to grow from their surrounding local communities and decarbonisation and fighting climate change are at the heart of the communities’ interests. Finally, ports are literally on the front row when it comes to facing the consequences of Climate Change (sea level rise, extreme weather conditions). Through its participation in the Navigating a Changing Climate Partnership, ESPO aims to build further awareness amongst its member ports on both climate change mitigation and adaptation.

NavClimate Partner Logo