Ireland Hosts Important International Fisheries Negotiations15 January 2013
IRELAND - Ireland, on behalf of the European Union, is hosting important fisheries negotiations between Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Germany, Netherlands, Belgium, France, United Kingdom, Spain, Portugal and Ireland. These negotiations on the annual fishing arrangements for 2013 between the European Union (EU) and Norway commence at the National Seafood Centre in Clonakilty today, Tuesday the 15 January.
Economically one of the most important fishing agreements entered into by the EU, the talks involving Norway for 2013 have not concluded successfully so far due to difficulties on a number of fronts notably, balancing an exchange of fishing opportunities, mutual access arrangements, and cod management arrangements.
Over seventy delegates from across Europe and Norway will meet at the National Seafood Centre in Clonakilty for the week long talks.
The talks will in part deal with the arrangements for 2013 for the annual €1 billion mackerel fishery. It is expected that, in light of the continuing refusal of Iceland and the Faroe Islands to enter fair and appropriate management arrangements for mackerel, both the EU and Norway, as the largest shareholders of the North East Atlantic mackerel stock, will take this opportunity to finalise fishing limits for mackerel for 2013.
Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Simon Coveney stated: “I hope that the question of quotas for mackerel in particular are finalised this week to allow our industry plan for the year ahead. I also expect that with a successful outcome on the exchange of fishing quotas and access arrangements will enable the finalisation of quotas for other stocks such as Blue Whiting and the Herring in Norwegian waters which are of major importance to our pelagic fishing fleet. Agreement on access for Norwegian vessels to EU waters is also vital to facilitate the landing and processing of Norwegian Blue Whiting in our pelagic factories along the west and north west coasts.”
On mackerel the Minister added: “I am very concerned about the ongoing crisis associated with the mackerel stock. It is imperative that pressure is applied to Iceland and the Faroes to cease their unsustainable fishing operations and come to the table with meaningful proposals to resolve the impasse. With that in mind, I am seeking a joint approach by Norway and the EU on appropriate measures to address the current overfishing of Mackerel by Iceland and the Faroes.”
Concluding the Minister said: “It is a good opportunity for Ireland, at the start of its Presidency of the European Union, to host these important talks and to put Ireland again centre stage in terms of our positive role within the European Union. Over seventy international delegates descending on Clonakilty for a week in mid January will bring a welcome boost to the local economy.“
TheFishSite News Desk