Fishing opportunities for 2014

03 Jun 2013
25 fish stocks in EU waters are known not to be overfished, including herring

25 fish stocks in EU waters are known not to be overfished, including herring

The latest figures on fish stocks in EU waters reveal the European Commission’s efforts to phase out overfishing are paying off, but more still needs to be done.

The European Commission has adopted a consultation document on the state of European fish stocks to set out its intentions for proposing fishing opportunities for 2014.

The policy reveals that now only 39% of assessed fish stocks in EU waters of the Northeast Atlantic are now overfished, down from 47% last year and 95% in 2005. These include haddock, cod, common sole and herring.  

Average net profits made by the EU fishing fleet in 2011 also improved with a 40% increase.

Maria Damanaki, EU Commissioner for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, said: “These figures show that responsible fisheries management measures can and do work. Still, we need to strengthen our efforts to end overfishing by the target date we have agreed. We need to complete the reform of the Common Fisheries Policy in order to achieve that.”

The European Commission says the science base for assessing fish stocks is also improving, with new methods brought in by the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES) meaning that advice is available for an extra 30 stocks over last year.

For next year, the Commission wants the industry to stick to scientific advice and is asking for the views of Member States on the setting of Total Allowable Catches (TACs), quotas and fishing effort.

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