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European Union approves quota increase. Minister defends sustainable fishing

by ace
European Union approves quota increase. Minister defends sustainable fishing

European Committee of the Regions / Flickr

Overall, fishing opportunities increased by 17% in 2020 compared to this year. The Minister of the Sea warns that fishing should be appropriate to the sustainability of the species.

Brussels agreed at dawn on fishing quotas in 2020, and for Portugal this year the possibilities are up by 17%.

The proposed 50% cut for horse mackerel in national waters has been reversed to a 24% rise and the 20% hake cut has been revised to 5%, in line with scientific advice demonstrating the good condition of the stocks.

The sole catch limits have been lowered to a 20% reduction from the 40% proposed in October by the European Commission, and for cod a 1% increase in Svalbard waters (Norway) has been approved but a reduction 51% in the NAFO (Northwest Atlantic) zone.

This Wednesday, the Minister of the Sea, Serrão Santos, warned that fishing should be appropriate to the sustainability of the species and recommended that operators should find alternatives, especially for cod.

"There has to be a reduction and we have to find alternatives," because "we can't be assuming we fished a stock, or stock, above what determines its future, and that I wouldn't do," he explained.

"The adjustments we made were to create fishing opportunities within what the industry's recommendations and expectations were," he stressed, admitting that stocks are improving, noting that there are "many sources still in crisis", advocating good management policies that defend them.

Regarding the objective of the Common Fisheries Policy to end overfishing in 2020, Serrão Santos warned of the need to "think about a post-2020". “In the Mediterranean, the situation is so problematic that it is impossible to reach the maximum sustainable yield by 2020 for many sources,” he said, noting that it is a situation that is foreseen in the legislation.

Gonçalo Carvalho, from the NGO Sciaena, stressed, for his part, the non-compliance with the objective, which cannot go unpunished and stressed that he was “disappointed with the final numbers”.

Negotiations on fishing opportunities began on Monday and ended early in the morning after the traditional negotiating night that this year was due to "technical issues in the Baltic and Celtic Seas," the minister said.

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