As a general rule, fishing vessels registered in the EU fishing fleet register have equal access to all the EU waters and resources that are managed under the CFP. Access to fisheries is normally authorized through a fishing licence.
There are two temporary exceptions to this rule of equal access.
- In the waters up to 12 nautical miles from the coasts of the EU countries access can be limited by the EU country to vessels and fisheries that traditionally fish in those waters from adjacent ports, to vessels identified under existing neighbourhood relations, and to vessels related to fisheries as listed in the CFP (annex I). These restrictions generally give preferred access to vessels that traditionally fish in those waters from the adjacent ports.
- In the waters up to 100 nautical miles from the coasts of Europe’s outermost regions access can be restricted to vessels registered in the ports of these territories and to vessels that traditionally fish in those waters.
The exceptions expire by end 2022.