Anastasia Miliou, Hydrobiologist & Head Scientist of Archipelagos, IMC and the OCEAN2012 coalition issued the following statement as the European Commission published its proposal for the next fisheries subsidies instrument, the European Fisheries and Maritime Fund (EFMF).
“In 2008 the European Commission identified overcapacity as one of the primary drivers of overfishing, and public subsidies as fueling overcapacity. Yet a recent Commission report showed that many member states do not even assess the overcapacity of their fishing fleets, confirming that public subsidies are being spent blindly. For example, between 2000 and 2008, the EU provided subsidies of €33.5million for the modernisation of the bluefin tuna fleet, which targets a species that is classified as endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature.
“With an economic crisis raging throughout the EU, the public cannot afford blind and counterproductive spending of EU fisheries subsidies. Any future subsidies should assist in the delivery of a healthy marine environment and a transition to sustainable fisheries”.
1. A list of vessels in the tuna fleet that receive EU subsidies is available at www.fishsubsidy.org/EU/tuna-fleet, and a list of vessels convicted of serious infringements (illegal fishing) is available at http://www.fishsubsidy.org/infringements/. A list of vessels that received EU grants for modernisation and shortly afterwards grants for scrapping is available at: http://www.fishsubsidy.org/news/features/modernised-then-scrapped/
2. Detailed analysis of EU fisheries subsidies from 2000 to 2006 is available in “FIFG 2000-2006 Shadow Evaluation” (Cappell, R., T. Huntingdon and G. Macfadyen) at http://www.pewenvironment.eu/resources/view/id/115178?download=true
3. www.fishsubsidy.org details fisheries subsidies payments under the present European Fisheries Fund (2007 – 2013) and the Financial Instrument for Fisheries Guidance (1994-2006)
4. Reflections on further reform of the Common Fisheries Policy http://www.cfp-reformwatch.eu/pdf/reflection_cfp_08_mid.pdf
5. OCEAN2012 is an alliance of organisations dedicated to transforming European fisheries policy to stop overfishing, end destructive fishing practices and deliver fair and equitable use of healthy fish stocks.
OCEAN2012 was initiated, and is co-ordinated, by the Pew Environment Group, the conservation arm of The Pew Charitable Trusts, a non-governmental organisation working to end overfishing in the world´s oceans.
The steering group of OCEAN2012 consists of the Coalition for Fair Fisheries Arrangements, Ecologistas en Acción, The Fisheries Secretariat, nef (new economics foundation), the Pew Environment Group and Seas At Risk.