Industry urged to support sanctions ban

31 Jul 2014

Scottish fishermen are calling for EU member states to vote against the European Commission’s proposal to lift trade sanctions against the Faroes for their overfishing of Atlanto-Scandian herring.

The Commission previously implemented trade sanctions in response to the unsustainable fishing practices of the Faroese for herring, which resulted in their setting of a unilateral quota (105,000 tonnes) of over three times the share they should have fished in 2013 (31,940).

But now the Commission wants to lift sanctions following their reaching an agreement with the Faroes.

Mr Gatt says while this has resulted in lower quota level of herring for 2014 for the Faroes at 40,000 tonnes, it is still almost double the figure they should have been allocated this year (21,594) under the Coastal States agreement.

“It is a travesty of justice if you are seen as the guilty party when you take more than three times your allocated quota share, but it is deemed okay if you just take double. It makes a mockery of the whole ethos of sustainable fishing and the efforts of other countries which adhere to the international management plan,” said Ian Gatt, chief executive, Scottish Pelagic Fishermen’s Association.

“We therefore urge both the UK and other member state governments to oppose with real vigour the lifting of this ban. A vote in favour is essentially a vote in support of unsustainable fishing,” he added.

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Scottish Pelagic Fishermen’s Association (SPFA)

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European Commission

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