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

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