EU and Guinea-Bissau agreement signed

25 Nov 2014

The EU and Guinea-Bissau have signed a new three-year fisheries Protocol under the Sustainable Fisheries Partnership Agreement between the two parties.

EU boats, mostly from Spain, Portugal, France, Greece and Italy, will now be able to resume fishing in local waters after a two year interruption, following the restoration of constitutional order in Guinea-Bissau.

The agreement will allow up to 40 EU vessels to operate in Guinea-Bissau waters in return for a financial contribution of €9.2m a year by the EU. As part of that the EU will invest €3m a year to support the development of the local fisheries sector by strengthening Guinea-Bissau's monitoring, control and surveillance capacity, encouraging scientific cooperation, improving sanitary controls and offering support to artisanal fisheries. These actions will be programmed and implemented in accordance with the priorities expressed by Guinea-Bissau and will be consistent with the actions supported by the EU through the European Development Fund

Fisheries is an important economic activity and source of jobs for Guinea-Bissau, whilst EU boats have an interest in fishing tuna, shrimps, cephalopods and demersals along the country's coast. The fight against illegal fishing is of particular importance to both parties and the European Commission says that this can only be addressed through the cooperation and joint approach central to this agreement.

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