2012/2235(INI)

For a comprehensive EU fishery strategy in the Pacific region

Procedure completed

2012/2235(INI) For a comprehensive EU fishery strategy in the Pacific region
RoleCommitteeRapporteurShadows
Opinion DEVE PONGA Maurice (PPE)
Lead PECH FRAGA ESTÉVEZ Carmen (PPE) RODUST Ulrike (S&D), MEISSNER Gesine (ALDE), LÖVIN Isabella (Verts/ALE), FERREIRA João (GUE/NGL)
Lead committee dossier: PECH/7/09919
Legal Basis RoP 052
Subjects
Links

Activites

  • 2013/10/08 Results of vote in Parliament
    • Results of vote in Parliament
    • T7-0402/2013 summary
  • 2013/10/07 Debate in Parliament
  • 2013/09/24 Committee report tabled for plenary, single reading
    • A7-0297/2013 summary
  • 2013/09/18 Vote in committee, 1st reading/single reading
  • 2012/10/25 Committee referral announced in Parliament, 1st reading/single reading

Documents

AmendmentsDossier
55 2012/2235(INI) For a comprehensive EU fishery strategy in the Pacific region
2012/12/13 DEVE 12 amendments...
source: PE-502.023
2013/07/19 PECH 43 amendments...
source: PE-514.795

History

(these mark the time of scraping, not the official date of the change)

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    • The European Parliament adopted a comprehensive EU fishery strategy in the Pacific Region.

      It recalled that around half the tuna caught in the world are taken in the waters of the Western and Central Pacific, of which 80 % are in the Exclusive Economic Zones (EEZs) of island states and only 20 % in international waters.

      The resolution stated that despite slightly improved fisheries supervision, vigilance and monitoring in the Pacific, the sustainability of the region’s resources is being threatened by a major rise in the number of purse-seiners (mainly from Asia and the island states), the increase in the fishing effort, and illegal fishing. Parliament considered the EU’s approach in the field of fisheries in the Pacific should be to actively support the current regional efforts to address overcapacity and improve fisheries management.

      It proposed, to this effect, a targeted strategy which should:

      • ensure coherence among all the Community policies affecting the Pacific region;
      • within the framework of future, post-Cotonou relations with the Pacific ACP countries, have a regional focus that bolsters the position and role of the EU in the Western and Central Pacific region;
      • ensure that the 11th EDF takes this strategy into account and also reflects the possibility of increasing the percentage of sector-specific assistance for addressing fishing communities’ needs (including enhancing their contribution to local food security) and developing fishery infrastructure;
      • call for greater coordination and complementarity with other actors in the region in relation to development assistance.

      Parliament stressed the need for distant water fleetsto contribute, in cooperation with Pacific countries, to reducing fishing pressure on tropical tuna stocks, including by substantially reducing mortality levels for juvenile big-eye tuna, a stock of great economic importance to the region and one which is currently overfished.

      In the short term, the fisheries strategy should:

      • take account of the importance of this region from a fisheries standpoint and its value to the Union’s fleet and the EU market and fish processing industry;
      • provide legal certainty for the vessels operating there.

      Parliament noted that the EU’s strategy for accessing resources in the EEZs of the countries in the region by way of fisheries cooperation agreements has not worked properly except in the case of Kiribati, and considered that a new framework for close and advantageous relations between the various parties involved is needed in order to revitalise and consolidate those agreements. For Members, they considered that part of the problem is that the EU has held unsuccessful negotiations on agreements with the countries of the Western Pacific, which is where the EEZs of the Solomon Islands and the Federated States of Micronesia are located, rather than directing its efforts towards the Central Pacific, where the Community’s purse-seiner fleet has traditionally centred its operations.

      Parliament welcomed the fact that the Commission has completed prior assessments with the Cook Islands and Tuvalu with a view to launching negotiations on fisheries partnership agreements. It considered this new negotiating approach to be more in line with the regional focus repeatedly called for by Parliament.

      Overall, Parliament noted that the EU's approach to the Pacific should assist developing states, and small island developing states in particular, in their efforts to secure a greater share of the benefits from the sustainable exploitation of straddling and highly migratory fish stocks and should also help strengthen regional efforts to sustainably conserve and manage fisheries for such stocks.

      Combat against illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing (IUU fishing): Parliament called for measures to combat illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing (IUU fishing) and for the Commission to include an explicit reference to the IUU Regulation (EC) No 1005/2008 in the provisions of the EPA negotiated with the Pacific countries.

      EPAs should include a specific reference to the implementation of the IUU regulation, rather than simply general wording on the need to combat IUU fishing, and should not be concluded with third countries identified as ‘non-cooperating’.

      In the medium to long term, Parliament called on the Commission to provide for the establishing of a longer-term strategy for access for the EU fleet to the EEZs of the countries of the region, based on a regional framework agreement between the EU and the countries of the Western and Central Pacific, negotiated with the Forum Fisheries Agency (FFA) and centring on the following aspects:

      • outline the arrangements for access for the EU fleet;
      • establish a system of transparent governance which would in particular ensure the combating of IUU fishing;
      • based on the vessel day scheme (VDS), provided that measures are adopted to ensure its transparency, improve its effectiveness;
      • explore ways of channelling EDF development assistance for the region through the FFA, since the Pacific ACP countries do not have the human and technical resources to adequately utilise that funding.

      At the same time, Parliament stressed that the final stage in this process should be exclusively regional in its focus, i.e. it should take the form of a multilateral fisheries cooperation agreement with the EPA signatory countries that grants the Community fleet access to the EEZs of those countries.

      Lastly, the resolution underlined the need for Parliament to be adequately involved in the preparation and negotiating process and the long-term monitoring and assessment of the functioning of bilateral agreements according to the provisions of the TFEU and be immediately and fully informed, on an equal footing with the Council, at all stages of the procedure related to FPAs. It recalled its conviction that it should be represented by observers at the Joint Committee meetings envisaged in the fisheries agreements.

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