A fisheries policy for the future
The European Commission presents today its proposal for a major reform of the EU Common Fisheries Policy. The aim is to secure both fish stocks and fishermen's livelihood for the future while putting an end to overfishing and depletion of fish stocks.
Commissioner Damanaki said: "Action is needed now to get all our fish stocks back into a healthy state to preserve them for present and future generations. Only under this precondition can fishermen continue to fish and earn a decent living out of their activities."
She continued: "This means that we have to manage each stock wisely, harvesting what we can but keeping the stock healthy and productive for the future. This will bring us higher catches, a sound environment and a secure seafood supply. If we get this reform right, fishermen and coastal communities will be better off in the long run. And all Europeans will have a wider choice of fresh fish, both wild and farm produced."
Commissioner Damanaki's speech "Breaking the circle: introducing a new Common Fisheries Policy [39 KB] "
"Getting it right - The birth of a new Common Fisheries Policy [4 MB] " - Presentation of the reform of the Common Fisheries Policy to the European Parliament Committee for Fisheries
The reform will introduce a decentralised approach to science-based fisheries management by region and sea basin, to bring all fish stocks to sustainable levels by 2015.
The proposals also include clear targets and timeframes to stop overfishing; market-based approaches such as individual tradable catch shares; support measures for small-scale fisheries; improved data collection; and strategies to promote sustainable aquaculture in Europe.
The waste of food resources and the economic losses caused by throwing unwanted fish back into the sea, a practice known as “discarding”, will be phased-out and consumers will be able to get better information on the quality and sustainability of the products they buy.
The decision making will be simpler and favour solutions tailored to regional and local needs, as only general policy principles and goals will be prescribed from Brussels, while Member States will have to decide and apply the most appropriate conservation measures. Operators throughout the fishing sector will have to make their own economic decisions to adapt fleet size to fishing possibilities. Fishermen's organizations will play a stronger role in steering market supply and increasing fishermen's profits.
Last but not least, the reform, introduces better governance standards in the EU and on the international level through sustainable fisheries agreements.
The reform of the EU Common Fisheries Policy - videoclip
Reform of the common fisheries policy: all the documents