Joint NGO recommendations for 2019 total allowable catches for selected Northeast Atlantic and North Sea stocks, December 2018

                                 

Input to the EU Fisheries Council Meeting, 17-18 December 2018

Ahead of the EU Fisheries Council Meeting on 17-18 December in Brussels, NGOs have written to EU Fisheries Ministers with recommendations for total allowable catches For selected Northeast Atlantic and North Sea stocks in 2019.

“We urge you to take our recommendations into account during your discussions at the upcoming Council meeting and to ensure that the 2019 TACs meet the requirements of the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP).”

We welcome the long-term progress towards more sustainable fisheries that has been made, which has contributed to the enhanced profitability of many segments of the European fleet, as presented in the Commission’s communication on fishing opportunities1. However, the Scientific, Technical and Economic Committee on Fisheries (STECF) has made clear in its latest CFP monitoring report that “progress achieved until 2016 seems too slow to ensure that all stocks will be rebuilt and managed according to FMSY by 2020”. With only two December Fisheries Councils left to achieve the requirements of Article 2(2) of the CFP basic regulation, it is essential that ministers ensure that fishing opportunities for 2019 do not exceed scientifically advised levels and that the Maximum Sustainable Yield (MSY) objective can be achieved for all stocks by 2020 at the latest. There is no time for further delays.

In order to urgently meet the legal requirements for all stocks, we call on you to consider the following recommendations when preparing your national position on the 2019 fishing opportunities and throughout the discussions in the lead-up to and at December Council (continue reading).