CFP finally adopted

10 Dec 2013
The new Common Fisheries Policy has formally been adopted. Credit August Linnman/CC BY-SA 2.0

The new Common Fisheries Policy has formally been adopted. Credit August Linnman/CC BY-SA 2.0

Following the final vote by the European Parliament on 10 December, the new Common Fisheries Policy has now formally been adopted, and will be applied throughout EU waters from 1 January 2014.

The overall aim of the reformed CFP is to end overfishing and make fishing environmentally, economically and socially sustainable. This week's vote is the culmination of a lengthy process which started with an extensive public consultation, following which the Commission put forward an ambitious reform package in 2011.

Key aspects of the CFP include: A ban on discarding perfectly edible fish; a legally binding commitment to fishing at sustainable levels; and decentralised decision making, allowing Member States to agree the measures appropriate to their fisheries. The ban on discarding in pelagic fisheries will take effect on 1 January 2015, with a further ban on discards in other fisheries starting from 1 Jan 2016.

“Today's vote by the European Parliament means that we now have a policy which will radically change our fisheries and will pave the way for a sustainable future for our fishermen and our resources,” said European Commissioner, Maria Damankai. “The new CFP is a driver for what is most needed in today's Europe: a return to growth and jobs for our coastal communities.”

The latest vote focussed on deep-sea fishing – the European Parliament voted against phasing out deep-sea bottom trawling and gillnetting, but some deep-sea conservation measures were agreed.

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