ROUNDUP: EU and UK agree on fish catches

BRUSSELS / LONDON (dpa-AFX) – After tough negotiations, the EU and Great Britain have agreed on catches for fish. Specifically, it is about how many tons from jointly managed stocks in 2022

– also from the North Sea – may be brought ashore without the

Exacerbate overfishing. With a view to ecologically sensible limits, the environmental organization Oceana criticizes, for example, that certain catches are above the amounts recommended by scientists as sustainable. These included herring west of Scotland, whiting in the Irish Sea or cod in the Celtic Sea south of Ireland.

Fishing is often a heated and emotional discussion in Europe. After Brexit, negotiations on catches in the EU had become all the more complicated. As part of the withdrawal agreement, both parties agreed to hold annual talks in order to set quotas and catches for the following year. On the EU side, these are managed by the EU Commission.

The size of the catch depends, among other things, on international obligations, scientific recommendations for ecologically acceptable catches and the economic situation of fishermen. The EU countries still have to formally approve the agreement.

The most relevant catches for Germany for 2022 had already been decided in negotiations between the EU and Norway and the United Kingdom. The German Fisheries Association praised the EU Commission on Wednesday: “The EU negotiators deserve respect for having got this far before the end of the year and for being able to start fishing in January.”

It was clear that it would be more difficult after Brexit. Now we are at least on the way to a new normal. This also means that the British negotiated “always hard and tricky”. Oceana also praised the fact that the agreement would offer stability for 2022 and welcomed it in principle.

The British fishermen, on the other hand, were less enthusiastic. There is “a lot of dissatisfaction” with the agreement, said Barry Deas of the industry association NFFO (National Federation of Fishermen’s Organizations). He also spoke of a “huge gap between what the government promised by leaving the EU and what was actually achieved” ./ mjm / DP / nas

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