Today, after long hours of discussion in Luxembourg, EU Fisheries Ministers reached an agreement on the catch limits for 2022 for the ten main commercial stocks in the Baltic Sea. Despite the huge quota cuts in the last years for key species such as cod and herring in certain areas, the poor environmental status of the Baltic Sea, and not overfishing, is affecting the sustainability of these stocks. Nevertheless, Ministers have decided to further reduce fishing opportunities for Western and Central herring as well as for Western cod. On the positive side, the Council has agreed to increase fishing opportunities for plaice, sprat, Bothnian herring and Gulf of Finland salmon. Despite these increases, the reality is that 2022 will still remain an extremely challenging year for the Baltic fishers.
Last night, after long hours of discussion in Luxembourg, EU Fisheries Ministers reached an agreement on fishing opportunities for 2018 for the ten stocks in the Baltic Sea. The total allowable catches (TACs) were unanimously agreed in the framework of the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) which aims to have all stocks fished at sustainable levels by 2020. For this purpose, Ministers’ decision will allow 7 out of 8 stocks for which complete scientific advice was available to be fished at maximum sustainable yield (MSY) levels, representing 98% of fish landings in volume. However, in view of the huge progress in the sustainable management of the Baltic Sea, fishermen expected better quota allocations for 2019.
The European Commission have just published their proposal for 2016 fishing opportunities for the 10 main commercial stocks in the Baltic Sea. For 7 of these stocks, scientific opinion has advised catch limits at MSY levels.