EU Science Hub

Good news for the EU Fishing Fleet – Positive trends in economic performance and sustainability

The EU fishing fleet registered record-high net profits of €770 million in 2014
©Fotolia, author: Bruno Barracuda
Jan 24 2017

A JRC-DG MARE report has just been published,  showing that the performance of the EU fishing fleet has significantly improved in recent years, moving from a loss-making position in 2008 to record-high net profits of €770 million in 2014 – up from €500 million in 2013. Forecasts for 2016 remain positive.

Based on an analysis carried out in close collaboration with the Scientific, Technical and Economic Committee for Fisheries (STECF - the Commission’s scientific advisory body to the Common Fisheries Policy), the JRC and DG MARE co-authored the report 'EU Fishing Fleet - Trends and Economic Results', which summarises the status and trends of the European Union's Fishing Fleet.

The report, which outlines the key findings of the JRC's 2016 Annual Economic Report (AER) on the EU Fishing Fleet, concludes that the EU fishing fleet's gross added value to the economy increased by 11% between 2013 and 2014, amounting to €3.7 billion. This trend is also confirmed by an increase in the average salaries of the EU fishing fleet employees during the period of analysis. Moreover, due to the more efficient way in which many EU fleets operate, fuel consumption and fuel use intensity decreased significantly.

This positive economic development is accompanied by the observation that increasing number of fish stocks are being fished sustainably. These stocks tend to be fished at Maximum Sustainable Yields (MSYs), enabling the fishing industry to take the highest amount of fish from the sea while keeping fish stocks healthy. The MSY concept is a central pillar of the Common Fisheries Policy, which greatly depends on the provision of best available advice.

The 2016 AER is based on data collected by Member States, compiled by the JRC, and analysed by economic experts from the STECF and the JRC. It is a major scientific contribution supporting the Blue Economy and Growth, which aims to foster sustainable economic growth and the creation of jobs for EU citizens while safeguarding seas and oceans.

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