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News :: European Commission welcomes progress made to implement the landing obligation

European Commission welcomes progress made to implement the landing obligation

(17/06/2014) The European Commission welcomes the broad support the “Omnibus regulation” received today in Council.

The Omnibus Regulation is needed to align the technical and control rules to the new Common Fisheries Policy and notably to the landing obligation which shall apply from 1 January 2015. Once adopted, the new legislation will provide clarification of the legal conditions for fishermen, for control services and for managers in the Member States. The Commission considers that the current compromise is a move in the right direction, although the Commission cannot support derogations that would allow the consumption of undersized fish.
 
Today’s endorsement paves the way for the start of negotiations with the European Parliament. The Commission now looks forward to a swift agreement on the new legislation. 
 
 
Context

The reform of the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) establishes the obligation to land all catches into EU law. This "landing obligation" was put in place to end the wasteful practice of discarding marketable fish back into the sea, and will be introduced progressively starting from 1 January 2015. In order for this to happen, a number of technical regulations need to be amended. These are rules governing how and where fishermen may fish, including details on types of fishing gear used, closed areas and other measures to protect the marine environment. These changes are necessary to remove any legal and practical impediments to implementation of the landing obligation. Amendments are specifically needed to the rules governing the permitted composition of catches and to replace current minimum landing sizes with minimum conservation references sizes.