News :: Closure of 2013 Greek and Maltese Bluefin Tuna purse seine fishery
Closure of 2013 Greek and Maltese Bluefin Tuna purse seine fishery
(10/06/2013) The Bluefin Tuna purse seine season lasting from 26 May to 24 June came to an early end this year for Greek and Maltese purse-seiners.
Greece communicated on 3 June that, since its only purse seiner exhausted its quota on 3 June, and having already closed fishing activities for the other gears in April and May, no more quota was left. Consequently, the entire Greek quota has been consumed and no more Bluefin Tuna can be caught, landed and sold by Greek fishermen.
Maltese purse-seiners have exhausted their quota on 8 June and have decided to call back their vessels to ports.
The majority of Spanish, French and Italian purse-seiners have also exhausted their individual quotas and their respective authorities have suspended their activities and called them to port.
The Commission having cooperated closely with Member states since the beginning of the fishing campaign, welcomes their decision to act swiftly and rapidly and will proceed in the following days to a confirmatory closure.
This is a clear indication that the ICCAT (International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas) and EU rules are effective since no vessels can continue to remain at sea once the quota is exhausted. ICCAT adopted a reinforced multi-annual recovery plan for Bluefin tuna at its last annual meeting in November 2012 that enhances the sustainable management of the stock and introduces a number of new strict control measures.
The Commission, in close coordination with Member States continues to closely monitor the other fishing activities on Bluefin Tuna, namely done by small scale fisheries and by traps.