The European Commission proposals for the new Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) were published on 13 July 2011. Agreement needs to be reached between the Commission, the Council of Ministers and the European Parliament in order for the new policy to be implemented on 1 January 2013. Member states, the industry, NGOs and civil society are debating the issues raised by the reform in order to influence the policy.
The main proposals include a discard ban by 2016 when fishermen would be obliged to land all catches (except those which can survive being discarded); a commitment to reach Maximum Sustainable Yield by 2015 for all species; and a proposal that all Member States must establish Tradable Fishing Concessions (TFC) with the aim to reduce the capacity of the EU fleet.
Before coming into force, the policy will be subject to the scrutiny of the European Council and, for the first time for a CFP reform proposal, the European Parliament. Within the Parliament, each proposal from the Commission will be appointed to an MEP who becomes the rapporteur with the job of drafting amendments to the Commission’s proposals. The Fisheries Committee discussed the reports at its October and November 2012 meetings. If the Committee adopts the position it is forwarded to the European Parliament and amendments can be proposed by other MEPs.
Further information on the evidence heard by the Committee during its consideration is detailed below.
Following its consideration, the Committee agreed to write to UK Government and Scottish Government (copied to the Westminster Committees); the European Commissioner; and the European Parliament’s fisheries committee outlining the Committee's main conclusions.
The Committee took oral evidence at its meetings on 14 September, 2 and 9 November 2011.
Read the meeting papers and the Official Report (2011)