EU-Morocco fisheries partnership agreement:
- extracts from the joint debate
Lieu: Strasbourg, France
End production: 12/12/2011 First transmission: 12/12/2011
Parliament held a final debate on EU-Morocco fisheries agreement on Monday to extend the protocol which specifies the number of EU vessels, quotas allocated to them and EU fees for access. This is after the failed bid by 77 MEPs to refer the EU-Morocco fisheries agreement to the European Court of Justice on the grounds of lack of evidence that it benefits the Sahrawi population.
The fisheries agreement with Morocco, which is the second most important EU fisheries agreement and is currently worth €36.1 million, will appear on Parliament's agenda again soon as the Commission is expected to propose a completely new protocol to enter into force after February 2012.
Only the original language version is authentic and it prevails in the event of its differing from the translated versions.
||Exterior view of the EP, Strasbourg
||SOUNDBITE (English) Carl HAGLUND, (ALDE, FI), Rapporteur: "Practically speaking the return on the agreement is negative , many agreements have a positive return, with about a 40% positive return, while this one has negative return, only 65 cent return on every 1 euro invested. This is a very bad deal for the European tax payers".
||SOUNDBITE (English) Carl HAGLUND, (ALDE, FI), Rapporteur: "The basic principle behind fisheries partnership agreement is that we fish the surplus. In other words the fish is there to be fished, and not over fished. So is disturbing to know that out of the eleven stock that we are fishing within the agreement the ones we were able to asses are nine out of eleven, two of them lack data, the 9 fishes stocks are over fished".
||SOUNDBITE (Spanish) Carmen FRAGA ESTEVEZ, (EPP, ES), Rapporteur :
"La fishing flotilla is not the one to be blamed. I'm in favor of solving this by speaking in favor of this agreement. I disagree with what the people said, this are against this either because of the Sahara politics either because of other fisheries issues. I would like to point out that in 2006 in the light of fisheries agreement between the EU and Morocco this house was very firm on the advantages that will provide for the citizens of Sahara region, because bad negotiations have led to bad results".
||SOUNDBITE (English) Maria DAMANAKI, EU Commissioner for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries: "We really didn't have the possibility to go for a better agreement referring to economic and environmental issues. However it is clear that any future negotiations will have to arrive at a better deal. After all, this interim protocol made it possible for fishing activities to continue without interruption. I know that a lot of you are not convinced about this, but I would like just to remind you that this is really important for some hundreds of European vessels fishing there, most of them small scale vessels".
||Cutaways (4 shots)