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INSEPARABLE - Eat, Buy and Sell Sustainable FishINSEPARABLE - Eat, Buy and Sell Sustainable FishINSEPARABLE - Eat, Buy and Sell Sustainable FishINSEPARABLE - Eat, Buy and Sell Sustainable Fish

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EU Ministers have reached agreement on fishing opportunities for 2015 in the Atlantic, North Sea and Black Sea following lengthy discussion at the Agriculture and Fisheries Council on the 15th and 16th December. Karmenu Vella, the EU's Commissioner for Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, presented the Commission's proposals based for the first time on the new Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) which aims to have all stocks fished at sustainable levels.

Scientific, Technical and Economic Committee for Fisheries (STECF)

The implementation of the CFP requires the assistance of highly qualified scientific personnel, particularly in the fields of marine biology, marine ecology, fisheries science, fishing gear technology and fishery economics. For that purpose the Scientific, Technical and Economic Committee for Fisheries (STECF) was established by Commission Decision 93/619/EC, renewed in 2005 by Commission Decision 2005/629/EC , amended by Commission Decision 2010/74/EU and Commission Decision 2012/C 72/06 .

The Members of the STECF are nominated by the Commission from highly qualified scientific experts having competence in these fields. The term of a Member of the Committee is 3 years and is renewable. The current STECF Members and reserve list was adopted on 27 October 2010 and can be found on the STECF webpage.

Acting in co-operation with officials of the Commission the Committee may form internal working groups, whose meetings can also be attended by invited experts. The Commission provides the secretariat of the Committee and of the working groups.

The STECF may be consulted by the Commission on all problems connected with the provisions governing access to zones and resources of EU fisheries and the regulation of fisheries activities. The opinion of STECF is crucial in the process of setting annual Total Allowable Catches TACs and quotas.

The Committee produces an annual report on the situation as regards fisheries resources and on developments in fishing activities. It also reports on the economic implications of the fishery resources situation.

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