Six commissions to promote and defend the interests of 161 member regions.
The CPMR decided to organise itself into geographical commissions in order to make it easier to articulate the particular circumstances of each of the major sea basins.
Each geographical commission has its own organisational structure, so that it can promote its specific identity and cooperate on subjects of common interest, while contributing to the cohesion and unity of the Conference.
The The Islands Commission was set up in 1979 to defend the notion that being an island is not synonymous with isolation.
The Atlantic Arc,
North Sea and Intermediterranean commissions were set up in 1989.
The Atlantic Arc Commission aims to make the western European seaboard more dynamic in face of the shift of the centre of gravity to the east. The North Sea Commission is working to turn its sea basin into a major economic entity. The Intermediterranean Commission focuses on the south of the Mediterranean and the development of the Euro-Mediterranean dialogue.
The Baltic Sea Commission was created in 1996. In anticipation of successive waves of EU enlargement, it promotes cooperation with the new members and Russia.
The Black Sea and Balkans commissions were created in 2002/2003. They merged in 2004 in order to develop joint projects and promote peace and stability.