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Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Freshwater aquaculture should be supported

In parallel with the reform of Common Fisheries Policy, the regulation of Atlantic fishing should be revised; and freshwater aquaculture should be assisted. This was the predominant view at the meeting of the Agriculture and Fisheries Council, held in Luxembourg on 14 April 2011. Participants also discussed the role innovation could play, in the preservation of traditional lifestyle in rural areas. Ministers exchanged views on the evaluation of the review of fishing effort management in western waters, under the Commission’s Communication. They were looking for a possible framework which could be adopted for Atlantic fishing-grounds in order to protect over-exploited stocks. They also discussed whether it was necessary to change the present system, and if so, when and how. Furthermore, they examined whether they should connect, the revision of the fishing effort management regime to the Common Fisheries Policy’s ongoing reform. The European Union provides 4.6 percent of the world’s fishing and fish production, but it relies on considerable import to satisfy domestic consumption. The 27 Member States imported a total of 5.6 million tons of fish in 2007, which complemented 5.1 million tons of fish caught, and 1.3 million tons produced. Seven years earlier, in 2000, 6.7 million tons of fish were caught in the Union, while the level of production was the same, which means, the EU makes up the decrease in marine catches through import only. The main reason for decreasing the marine catches in the EU, is the overfishing of stocks, which means we are catching more and more fish, not allowing the fish population to reproduce in a year. So to prevent this, marine fishing should be drastically curbed, and fishing capacity decreased. The EU has such measures in mind for years, so the plan to enforce such measures should not be postponed any further.

Source: Hungarian Presidency