The Plenary recognised that the Agreement promotes sustainability, is ethical and fair for all, and is good value for money for the EU.
European Commissioner for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, Maria Damanaki, said the new Protocol would be beneficial to both parties. "I thank the European Parliament for consent to the Protocol which ensures environmental sustainability, benefits the EU fishing fleet and offers good value for money to EU taxpayers. Our fishermen can now continue to operate in Mauritanian waters whilst the Protocol also offers sectoral support to the local fisheries sector and creates jobs for Mauritanians".
The new Protocol follows scientific advice with new technical provisions adopted in order to protect stocks considered to be overfished whilst the activities of some fleets were adapted to ensure protection of the marine environment.
The overall EU financial contribution has slightly decreased compared to the previous Protocol but sectoral support will still be offered with incentives for developing processing facilities locally and a commitment to ensuring 60% of seamen on board EU vessels will be Mauritanian – all of which will help support the local economy.
The European Parliament's consent is the penultimate step in the internal procedure and paves the way for its entry into force. Throughout and after negotiations, the EU and Mauritania have kept a constructive dialogue in order to make the Protocol attractive and in line with the EU's basic principles of sustainability, fairness and value for money.