Ministers urged to end overfishing

World Fishing & Aquaculture

More than 217 civil society groups have written to EU Fisheries Ministers urging them to support the European Parliament’s aim to restore fish stocks by 2020 and end overfishing by 2015.

The letter has been sent as negotiations on the reform of the European Union’s Common Fisheries Policy enter the final and decisive stage.

Although in February the European Parliament voted overwhelmingly in support of ending EU overfishing by 2015 and the restoration of fish stocks by 2020, the 27 fisheries ministers on the Fisheries Council have so far rejected these targets – agreeing only to end overfishing by 2020 and they have not set a target for restoring fish stocks.

“Two-hundred and seventeen civil society groups have reminded ministers that ending overfishing is a legal obligation for the EU and that it makes economic, social, and environmental sense,” said Uta Bellion of The Pew Charitable Trusts. “We are calling on EU fisheries ministers to follow the example of Australia, New Zealand, and the United States and agree to a policy that will allow fish stocks to recover to sustainable levels.”

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