Brussels - Seas At Risk and The Fisheries Secretariat sent a brief to Fisheries Ministers following the publication of the Commission Communication on Fishing Opportunities for 2016 and ahead of the Council meeting 16 June.

The Communication outlines the Commission’s principles for fixing fishing possibilities next year, showing a commitment to implement the Common Fisheries Policy and its MSY objective, but not always with the necessary clarity and consistency.

SAR and FISH have highlighted in their message to Fishery Ministers the need to agree to fishing limits below FMSY to restore and maintain populations above BMSY in line with the CFP. They further welcomed the clear statement of the Commission that in the context of the landing obligation, adjustments of fishing opportunities to account for fish previously discarded will not be done at the cost of reaching MSY; fishing limits will always remain below FMSY. However, due to the current lack of effective monitoring and limited proof of compliance with the landing obligation, any increase in Total Allowable Catch (TAC) could potentially result in a further increase in both landings and discards.

The brief can be found here.