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Thursday, 18 March 2010

European Parliament Study on the impacts of WTO negotiations on fisheries

A European Parliament study on the impacts of WTO negotiations on fisheries underlines the significance of trade in fisheries for the EU-27 as the leading import market for fish products in the world. The EU-27 share of world import amounts to 30 percent in value. Imports originate mainly from Norway, China, Iceland and the USA. Around 10 percent of EU-27 imports are imported from ACP countries. Commenting this, the study highlights that 'regarding the special relationship with ACP countries it has to be noted that even under preferential conditions imports from these countries amount only to about ten percent in terms of value'. Trade flows between EU-27 and ACP countries show that the value of EU imports are 5,5 times larger then export value. The origins of the imports by EPA groupings are mainly EPA West Africa (mainly unprocessed fish), EPA East South Africa (processed fish products) and EPA Southern Africa (processed fish products). The study concludes that reductions of general tariffs (in a WTO context) or further bilateral/multilateral trade agreements would in general result only in moderate reductions of internal EU prices at all levels (EU producers, processors and consumers). However, tariff reductions could severely damage specific sectors when high tariff peaks or tariff escalation are present. This especially concerns trade in tuna, shellfish, salmon and shrimp.  Study, European Parliament DG for internal policies, Policy Department B: structural and cohesion policies: fisheries, The impact of WTO and other trade negotiations on fisheries.

Source: European Parliament