European social partners in the fisheries sector, ETF and Europêche, call on the European Commission to support Member States in developing a specific COVID-19 vaccination protocol for fishers, adapting and prioritizing their access to the vaccine. Considering their recognition as essential workers and the particularities of the fishers' workplaces and working patterns, the social partners have put forward practical guidelines that can help accelerate the process.
This week, officials from the European Union and Guinea-Bissau (GB) met in Brussels to discuss the new terms and conditions for a new Protocol implementing the current sustainable fisheries partnership agreement (SFPA). This new agreement would allow around 50 EU vessels to continue fishing important species such as tuna, cephalopods, horse mackerel or shrimps in GB's waters for the next years in a transparent legal framework. However, due to disproportionate economic and technical conditions proposed by GB's authorities, the negotiations have been put on hold. The fishing vessel owners represented by Europêche regret these developments and hope that negotiations can resume and lead to a realistic agreement beneficial for both parties in the near future.