Fisheries

EU pursues ambitious agenda for the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organisation

EU pursues ambitious agenda for the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organisation

EU pursues ambitious agenda for the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organisation

18/09/2017

The European Union will participate in the upcoming meeting of the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organisation, which will take place in Montreal from 18 to 22 September 2017.

Representatives of 12 Contracting Parties will deliberate on conservation and enforcement measures for this regional fisheries management organisation (RFMO). The meeting will take place for the first time under a revised NAFO Convention. The focus of the meeting will be on setting the total allowable catch (TAC) for fish stocks under this organisation to ensure their sustainable management. The EU will seek solutions based on the best available scientific advice, aiming to ensure sustainability for the stocks and predictability for the industry's future.

Among the headline issues are new multiannual management rules for Greenland Halibut, and paving the way for a new management rule for cod in the Flemish Cap. The EU will continue supporting the protection of vulnerable marine ecosystems  (VMEs) and will strive to ensure that NAFO's VMEs protection policy is based on the best available scientific evidence and clear decision-making.  To this end, the EU has, for example, contributed to the NEREIDA seabed mapping project, aiming at improving knowledge about the sea bottom.

Regarding control and enforcement, the EU will continue to promote compliance of the EU fleet with NAFO rules, both at sea and in port, as well as measures that increase the efficiency of NAFO’s control and inspection systems. The EU will continue leading the efforts to end wasteful discarding practice. A further key issue, will be the launching of a new Performance Review exercise for the organisation.