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European Commission

Press release

Brussels, 24 October 2012

Fisheries: Commission proposes fishing opportunities for 2013 in the Atlantic and North Sea

The European Commission has proposed fishing opportunities for 2013 for certain fish stocks in the Atlantic and the North Sea. Today's proposal sets levels of total allowable catch (TAC) and fishing effort for stocks managed exclusively by the EU. In line with scientific advice, the Commission proposes to increase or maintain the TACs for 16 stocks (including certain stocks of cod, Norway lobster, and sole), and reduce them for 47 stocks.

The Commission's ultimate goal and one of the pillars of the on-going Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) reform is to have all stocks fished at sustainable levels, the so-called Maximum Sustainable Yield (MSY), by 2015. Whenever possible, scientists advise on how to bring the stocks to MSY levels. This year, the so-called "MSY advice" could be issued for 20 stocks (compared to 12 last year). This is a marked improvement as far as the availability and quality of scientific data are concerned.

Maria Damanaki, European Commissioner for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, said: "we have to think long-term. European fishermen face a bleak future without sustainable, healthy stocks. Thanks to long-term management a number of stocks in the Atlantic waters are already fished at MSY levels. But at the same time 47% of stocks are still overfished. These facts support the Commission's vision for the CFP reform."

Details of the proposals

According to scientific advice, Norway lobster in the West of Scotland, plaice in the Eastern Channel, cod and sole in the Celtic Sea, and sole in the Western Channel are at MSY levels and the Commission proposes to raise or maintain their TACs.

At the same time, cod stocks in the Irish Sea and the Kattegat continue to be in a poor state, and the poor data hampers the management of these stocks. Sole in the Irish Sea is at extremely low levels and the Commission proposes to stop the direct fisheries and minimise the by-catches. MSY advice for haddock in the Celtic Sea and sole in the Bay of Biscay demands considerable TACs cuts, so that the stocks can be brought to MSY levels. Cod and whiting in the West of Scotland, subject to extremely high rates of discarding, continue to be in a very poor state and well below safe levels.

For more than 30 stocks where data is limited, the Commission has followed the direction recommended by the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES), and proposed cutting the TAC by 20%, in light of recent trends observed in these stocks, and on precautionary considerations.

For 13 stocks the scientific advice has been recently received, and needs to be further analysed before the proposal can be updated, later in the autumn.

Background

The present proposal concerns only the 83 stocks for which the TACs are decided by the EU alone. A second proposal will deal with the stocks for which the fishing opportunities are set in the context of Regional Fisheries Management Organisations (RFMOs) or consultations with third countries (shared stocks). It will be tabled later this autumn when some of the results of those international negotiations become available.

The proposed catch limits are based on the scientific advice from the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES) and the Scientific, Technical and Economic Committee for Fisheries (STECF). Stakeholders were also consulted, based on the Commission's Consultation document from June (IP/12/584).

The Commission already proposed fishing opportunities for the Baltic Sea for 2013 on 17 August and for deep sea stocks for 2013-2014 on 9 October (IP/12/1083).

More information:

Contacts :

Oliver Drewes (+32 2 299 24 21)

Lone Mikkelsen (+32 2 296 05 67)

Table 1: Stocks with proposals for increased TAC

Common name

Latin name

TAC Unit (see map)

TAC in 2012

TAC 2013

% TAC change 2012-13

Cod

Gadus morhua

VIIb,c,e-k, VIII,IX,X,CECAF 34.1.1 (EC)

10.059

10.200

1%

Common sole

Solea solea

VIIfg

1.060

1.100

4%

VIIe

777

894

15%

Hake

Merluccius

VIIIc, IX, X, CECAF 34.1.1 (EC)

12.299

14.144

15%

Herring

Clupea

VIIa

4.752

4.993

5%

Megrims

Lepidorhombus

IIa (EC), IV (EC)

1.845

2.820

53%

Norway lobster

Nephrops

VII - Porcupine Bank special condition

1.260

1.386

10%

Vb(EU and international), VI

14.091

16.650

18%

Plaice

Pleuronectes

VIIde

5.062

5.342

6%

Tusk

Brosme brosme

IIIa and EU 22-32

24

29

20%

Whiting

Merlangius

VIIb-k

19.053

24.500

29%

Table 1b: Stocks with no changes in TAC

Common name

Latin name

TAC Unit (see map)

TAC in 2012

TAC 2013

% TAC change 2012-13

Anchovy

Engraulis

IX,X,CECAF 34.1.1.

8360

8.360

0%

Cod

Gadus morhua

VIa, Vb…

0

0

0%

Plaice

Pleuronectes

VIIa

1627

1.627

0%

Pollack

Pollachius pollachius

Vb(EC), VI, XII, XIV

397

397

0%

VII

13.495

13.495

0%

Table 2: Stocks with proposals for decreased TAC

Common name

Latin name

TAC Unit (see map)

TAC in 2012

TAC 2013

% TAC change 2012-13

Anglerfish

Lophius

Vb(EC), VI, XII, XIV

5.183

4.146

-20%

VII

30.677

24.542

-20%

VIIIabde

8.220

6.576

-20%

VIIIc,IX,X,CECAF 34.1.1

3.300

2.050

-38%

Blue ling

Molva dypterigia

int waters of XII

815

652

-20%

Cod

Gadus morhua

VIb (Rockall subunit) …

78

62

-20%

Kattegat (IIIa(S))

133

100

-25%

VIIa

380

285

-25%

Common sole

Solea solea

VI, Vb, int waters of XII and XIV

60

48

-20%

VIIbc

44

35

-20%

VIIhjk

423

338

-20%

IIIa, IIIbcd (EC)

610

560

-8%

VIIa

300

60

-80%

VIId

5.580

4.800

-14%

VIIIab

4.250

3.000

-29%

Greater silver smelt

Argentina silus

I, II EC + int. w.

95

84

-12%

III,IV EC + int. w.

1.082

952

-12%

V,VI,VII EC + int. w.

4.316

3.798

-12%

Haddock

Melanogrammus

VIIa

1.251

1.001

-20%

Vb,VIa

6.015

3.100

- 48%

VIIb-k, VIII, IX, X, CECAF 34.1.1 (EC)

16.645

7.500

-55%

Hake (overall N. TAC)

Merluccius

overall northern TACs (IIIa / IIa and IV / Vb, VI, VII, XII and XIV / VIIIabde)

55.105

37.200

-32%

Herring

Clupea

VIIef

980

784

-20%

VIIghjk

21.100

17.200

-18%

Horse Mackerel

Trachurus

IX

30.800

30.000

-3%

Megrims

Lepidorhombus

VII

17.385

13.908

-20%

VIIIabde

1.716

1.373

-20%

Vb(EC), VI, XII, XIV

3.387

2.040

-40%

VIIIc,IX, X, CECAF34.1.1(EC)

1.214

890

-27%

Norway lobster

Nephrops

VIIIabde

3.899

3.200

-18%

IIa (EC), North Sea (EC)

21.929

17.350

-21%

VII

21.759

18.576

-15%

IX and X; EC waters of CECAF 34.1.1

273

246

-10%

VIIIc

82

74

-10%

Plaice

Pleuronectes

VIIfg

369

300

-19%

VIIhjk

176

113

-36%

Vb(EC waters), VI, XII, XIV

693

554

-20%

VIIbc

78

62

-20%

VIII,IX,X,CECAF 34.1.1

395

316

-20%

Pollack

Pollachius pollachius

IX,X,CECAF 34.1.1 (EC)

282

226

-20%

VIIIabde

1.482

1.186

-20%

VIIIc

231

185

-20%

Saithe

Pollachius virens

VII, VIII, IX, X, CECAF 34.1.1 (EC)

3.343

2.674

-20%

Sole

Solea spp.

VIIIcde,IX,X, CECAF 34.1.1 (EC)

1.072

858

-20%

Sprat

Sprattus

VIIde

5.150

4.120

-20%

Whiting

Merlangius

Vb(EC waters), VI, XII, XIV

307

246

-20%

VIIa

89

71

-20%

VIII

3.175

2.540

-20%

Table 3: Stocks subject to late advice

Common name

Latin name

TAC Unit (see map)

TAC in 2012

TAC 2013

Boarfish

Caproidae

VI, VII, VIII EC

82.000

pm

Herring

Clupea

VIa(S), VIIbc

4.247

pm

Horse Mackerel

Trachurus

VIIIc

25.011

pm

Ling

Molva molva

IIIa; EC waters of IIIb, IIIc, IIId

92

pm

Porbeagle

Lamna nasus

all areas

0

pm

Skates and rays

Rajidae

EC Waters of VI, VIIa-c, VIIe-k

9.915

pm

EC waters of VIII, IX

4.222

pm

IIa (EC), IV - North Sea (EC)

1.395

pm

IIIa

58

pm

VIId

887

pm

Spurdog

Squalus

EC and int. Waters of I, V, VI, VII, VIII, XII, XIV

0

pm

EC waters of IIa and IV

0

pm

IIIa

0

pm

Table 4: Stocks for which the TAC is delegated to an Individual MS

Common name

Latin name

TAC Unit (see map)

MS responsible

Herring

Clupea

VIa Clyde

United Kingdom

Horse Mackerel

Trachurus

CECAF(Canaries)

Spain

Horse Mackerel

Trachurus

CECAF(Madeira)

Portugal

Horse Mackerel

Trachurus

X, CECAF(Azores)

Portugal

Penaeus shrimps

Penaeus

French Guyana

France

Whiting

Merlangius

IX,X,CECAF 34.1.1.(EU)

Portugal


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