The move is also consistent with the regionalisation aims agreed as part of the recent reform to the Common Fisheries Policy. Risk management strategies will be coordinated at a local level through Joint Deployment Plans (JDPs) which facilitate joint inspection and surveillance activities.
The use of JDPs will create a level playing field in each sea basin and will be led by the European Fisheries Control Agency (EFCA) in Vigo. Member States will communicate their risk assessment results to the Agency and compile an annual report on the effectiveness of their inspection activities to the Commission and EFCA who will then evaluate the continued progress and effectiveness of the SCIPs.
In addition to salmon and cod, the scope of the Baltic Sea SCIP is extended to herring and sprat stocks which deserve special attention due to the difficulties in controlling large mixed catches of these species. Similarly, the SCIP for North Sea and adjacent waters has been extended to sole and plaice (in addition to cod).
The decisions were made possible by constructive and effective discussions on relevant draft proposals between the European Commission, the European Fisheries Control Agency and EU Member States. The SCIPs for both sea-areas are valid until the 31 December 2018. This timescale sets a solid legal basis for a more efficient mid-term planning of joint activities of all the involved stakeholders.