Welcoming the adoption, European Commissioner for Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Karmenu Vella stressed the programme's crucial role for sustainable growth: "Innovation and sustainability are at the heart of the UK's maritime and fisheries policy. With the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund, the country will be able to focus even more on new technologies that support competitiveness and environmental protection and build on its long-standing tradition in fisheries and leading position in aquaculture. I have no doubt that the Fund will help the UK's many maritime sectors to become more sustainable and more competitive in the near future."
Part of the money will go to help the UK's fleet transition to sustainable and discard-free fisheries. Across the fisheries, aquaculture and processing supply chains, funds will be injected into innovation, onshore and offshore infrastructure and efficient use of natural resources. Small businesses will get easier access to capital and a new emphasis on sites' restoration will re-attract people to coastal areas and improve local governance. Local development initiatives (aka Fisheries Local Action Groups or FLAGs) will be encouraged to diversify their economies, bring added value to their fishing activities and make fisheries and aquaculture communities stronger.
Other funds are destined to develop IT tools and technologies used for control and enforcement and to improve the traceability of fisheries products. The collection of fisheries data, which are vital for sustainable management, are equally sponsored.
UK's Fisheries Operational Programme priorities: