Brussels, 11 June 2012
Preparation of Agriculture and Fisheries Council, 12 June 2012
The Agriculture & Fisheries Council will meet in Luxembourg on 12 June, to address fisheries matters only. It will be chaired by Mrs Mette Gjerskov, Danish Minister of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries. Commissioner Maria Damanaki will represent the Commission at the meeting. The Council is expected to reach political agreement on the two main proposals within the framework of the Common Fisheries Policy reform:
- Proposal for a regulation on the basic provisions of the Common Fisheries Policy
- Proposal for a regulation on the Common Organisation of the Markets in Fishery and Aquaculture Products.
The Presidency will also present a progress report on the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF). The debates will be held in public. A press conference will be organised at the end of the meeting.
Reform of the Common Fisheries Policy – general approach on its main proposals
The Council is expected to reach a general approach (political agreement) on the following main proposals of the CFP reform:
- Basic provisions of the CFP, which focus on fishing sustainably. To this end, all stocks should be rebuilt to maximum sustainable yield (MSY) levels through conservation and better management through multi-annual plans, and by ending the practice of discards. Transferable fishing concessions are proposed, to help adjust the fleet capacity. The proposal stresses the importance of reliable and complete data for decision-making. The decision-making process should be more decentralised and take account of the regional specifics, to avoid micro-management at the EU level. Measures to support the aquaculture industry are also proposed.
- Common Organisation of the Markets in fishery and aquaculture products. This proposal aims to help achieve the goals of the CFP, to make the industry more competitive and the markets more transparent, and to ensure a level playing field for all products marketed in the EU. It also aims to better inform the consumers through improved abelling of fishery and aquaculture products.
The objective of the new, reformed fisheries policy is to end overfishing and make fishing sustainable - environmentally, economically and socially.
The new policy aims to:
- bring fish stocks back to sustainable levels by setting fishing opportunities based on scientific advice,
- provide EU citizens with a stable, secure and healthy food supply for the long term,
- bring new prosperity to the fishing sector, end dependence on subsidies and create new opportunities for jobs and growth in coastal areas. (IP/11/873).
European Maritime and Fisheries Fund
The Presidency will present a progress report to the Council on the discussions so far on the proposal for a new financial instrument, the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF). The new fund will help deliver the ambitious objectives of the reform. It will assist fishermen in the transition towards sustainable fishing, as well as coastal communities in the diversification of their economies. The fund will finance projects that create new jobs and improve quality of life along European coasts (IP/11/1495).
The public debates and the press conference can be followed by video streaming: