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Friday, 31 January 2014

A sustainable fishing future in the EU and abroad

A new generation of Sustainable Fishing Partnership Agreements (SFPAs) come into force from 2013-2017, and with a new policy comes a new name. For the EU the same principles and standards that apply to fleets in European waters should also apply abroad. And when fishing in third-country waters, adequate support must be provided to the local fisheries sector for its sustainable development. The new agreements are therefore science-based, fair and sustainable, governed by enforceable regulations, strengthened in their monitoring and control framework and fully transparent.
The new SFPAs also separate the EU’s payment for access rights from its financial contributions to the partner country’s fisheries. EU support to local fishing sectors will help to build the scientific, administrative and technical capacity of local partners for the sustainable development of their fisheries. There has been a strengthening in the governance of the agreements, in particular when it comes to human rights. The human rights clause in the new SFPAs is indicative of the EU’s commitment to protect the same principles at home and abroad.
The EU signed a new six-year Protocol to their FPA with the Seychelles on 10 May 2013 that guarantees the long-term continuity of the most significant tuna agreement for the EU in the Indian Ocean, both in terms of the fishing opportunities it provides the EU fleet, and, in turn, the financial benefits derived by the Seychelles as a result of the EU’s fleet activity in the region. The new Protocol to the EU-Seychelles FPA, the largest tuna agreement currently in place, allows forty EU purse seiners and longline vessels to fish for tuna and other highly migratory species in the Seychelles EEZ. In return, the EU is paying over EUR 5 million annually for two years, half of which will support the Seychelles fisheries policy. The EU will then pay EUR 5 million annually for the remaining four years, half of which will again be allocated to the local fisheries sector.

Source: European Commission