With this year’s December Council approaching 16-17th December, the European Association of Fish Producers Organisations (EAPO) wants to see ministers set 2020 TACs and quotas with a balanced approach to both environment and the CFP’s socio-economic objectives.
Ahead of the December Fisheries Council, EAPO has sent a position paper with relevant recommendations for about 40 stocks to the Council Members, the European Commission and the regional fisheries management bodies.
The paper also contains constructive observations about pursuing the CPF objectives and the Commission’s approach to setting fishing opportunities. Specific attention is given to the difficulty in combining MSY objectives with the Landing Obligation.
EAPO sees sufficient elements to set TACs and quota at levels taking into account long term ecological sustainability as enabling fishermen to achieve economic, social and employment benefits, and contribute to the food supply.
‘We specifically address the management of stocks for which scientific advice is far from positive. Unfortunately this is the case for the cod stocks in the North Sea, the Celtic Sea and West of Scotland, where a lot of our membership’s mixed fisheries activities are taking place,’ said EAPO President Pim Visser.
‘Because of this mixed character of the fisheries, we suggest a gradual and adaptive approach to management measures to reach the sustainability objectives.’
He commented that only one week before the start of the December Agrifish council, for many stocks more information is required before a quantified proposal can be provided to the ministers. With the December Council Position Paper EAPO aims to contribute to the ministers having all the necessary data to agree the Council Regulation for fishing opportunities in 2020.