DSCC welcomes an international call to combat global fleet overcapacity

Date: March 14, 2014

Thessalonika, Greece – Today a joint statement committing to adopt measures to tackle global fleet overcapacity was signed by the EU and major fishing nations including the United States, Japan, Colombia,  Philippines and Indonesia.

This initiative reaffirms and strengthens the commitment made by all fishing nations to reduce excess fishing capacity through the adoption of the International Plan of Action for the Management of Fishing Capacity, in 1999. The Plan of Action states, in part:

“The management of fishing capacity should be designed to achieve the conservation and sustainable use of fish stocks and the protection of the marine environment consistent with the precautionary approach, the need to minimize by-catch, waste and discards and ensure selective and environmentally safe fishing practices, the protection of biodiversity in the marine environment, and the protection of habitat, in particular habitats of special concern.”

Matthew Gianni, Co-founder, Political and Policy Advisor for the DSCC welcomed news of this new global commitment: “What better way for the EU to follow through on this commitment than to phase-out deep-sea bottom trawl fishing, both in EU waters and the high seas  of the Northeast Atlantic. It’s high time to put the International Plan of Action into action!”

Today’s commitment to tackle world fleet overcapacity comes as a new draft EU regulation for the management of deep-sea fisheries in the Northeast Atlantic is presently under negotiation within the European Parliament and European Council of Ministers. The European Commission released a proposal for a new regulation in July 2012 and the European Parliament, in its ‘1st reading’ of the proposal, voted on a series of amendments to the Commission proposal in December 2013.  The Council has now begun to deliberate on both the Commission proposal and the amendments adopted by Parliament.

Read more about the DSCC’s campaign to end destructive deep-sea fishing practices in the North East Atlantic in our website.