Discards deal agreed in Brussels
- Published on Wednesday, 27 February 2013 10:15
- Written by Vicki Mitchem
New measures to prevent discards were agreed in the early hours of this morning by EU Fishing Ministers in Brussels.
The new discard rules - which now go forward to the final negotiation with MEPs - will be introduced progressively between 2014 and 2019 as part of the reform of the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) and will improve the sustainable management of our valuable fisheries.
Commenting on the landmark deal, Scotland's Fisheries Minister Richard Lochhead said:
"EU Ministers agreed a plan which will start in 2014 and phase out discards by 2019 and bring to an end a 30 year scandal.
"This negotiation is a key milestone on the road to a discard free Europe and delivers a compromise plan which is both realistic and workable.
"No longer will European fishermen be dumping millions of tonnes of fish overboard which is a waste of a valuable food resource to the detriment of our stocks and the industry.
"Fisheries Ministers from across Europe have now given a mandate to the negotiators to reach a final deal with the EU Parliament as part of the reform of the failed Common Fisheries Policy.
"It has been a long hard road to achieve agreement towards a package that represents the regional difference across European fleets. And the negotiation was dominated by attempts of some nations to exempt certain stocks by adding in specific loopholes.
"We recognise there is still a challenge ahead for our fleet but they have already shown leadership by reducing discards over the past few years. Now there is more for them to do and a requirement for the rest of Europe to follow. We all need work together to ensure smooth implementation."
Source: Scottish Government