1. Council Regulation ( EC) No 708/2007 places an obligation on Member States to ensure there is adequate protection of aquatic habitats from the risks associated with the use of alien and locally absent species in aquaculture, whilst contributing to the sustainable development of the aquaculture industry.
2. It does this by providing for a system of permits and environmental risk assessment. Permits are required for the introduction of alien species and for the translocation of locally absent species between Member States. Movements to closed aquaculture facilities are exempt but only where the species are transported under conditions which prevent the escape of those species and non-target species.
3. The EC Regulation exempts certain commonly used species, which are listed in Annex IV to the Regulation (Annex IV species) from the permitting requirements of the Regulation. However, Member States are able to place controls on the use of these species where they so wish.
4. Similarly, the translocation of locally absent species within Member States is exempt from the Regulation except where Member States can foresee environmental threats due to the translocation.
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