WWF Statement - EMFF outcomes at the EU Agriculture & Fisheries Council



Posted on 24 October 2012  
EMFF funds should instead support measures aimed at improving data collection and scientific knowledge of fish stocks, promoting the dissemination and adoption of selective fishing gears; and ultimately improving the state of fish stocks, the well-being of coastal communities and the fishing industry.
© WWF-Canon / Quentin BATESEnlarge

European Maritime Fisheries Fund (EMFF) 

In the early hours of this morning, Fisheries Ministers reached an agreement on a partial general approach on the Commission's proposal for a new European maritime and fisheries fund (EMFF), replacing the existing European fisheries fund (EFF). This agreement allows subsidies for vessel modernisation (15% of the funds Member States can access through the EMFF to be used for fleet restructuring until 2017), new engines and to cover losses incurred by fishermen as a result of temporary fishery closures.

WWF believes that overall Fisheries Ministers failed by accepting a compromise package which does not support the objectives of an ambitious reform, ensuring that indeed EU public funding contributes to overcapacity and overfishing. Only five Member States (Germany, Sweden, Denmark, the UK and the Netherlands) opposed aid for modernisation and supported more aid for data collection and control. A majority of other Member States were in favour of modernisation as well as keeping EU financial support for the temporary cessation of fishing activities.
 
Quote from Roberto Ferrigno, Common Fisheries Policy Project Coordinator, WWF European Policy Office: “Despite rhetoric on the need to stop current unsustainable fishing practices, EU governments are keeping to business-as-usual by using taxpayers money to subsidise a spate of destructive, unrealistic and unjustified fishing and aquaculture activities. EMFF funds should instead support measures aimed at improving data collection and scientific knowledge of fish stocks, promoting the dissemination and adoption of selective fishing gears; and ultimately improving the state of fish stocks, the well-being of coastal communities and the fishing industry. Governments must stop spending public money on destroying public goods – the fish in our oceans."
 

Source of the article
 

For further information or interview requests:
Alexandra Bennett, Communications Director,
WWF European Policy Office
E-mail: abennett@wwf.eu
Mobile: +32 477 393 400
 
Roberto Ferrigno, Common Fisheries Policy Project Coordinator,
WWF European Policy Office
E-mail: rferrigno@wwf.eu
Mobile: +32 497 433 688
EMFF funds should instead support measures aimed at improving data collection and scientific knowledge of fish stocks, promoting the dissemination and adoption of selective fishing gears; and ultimately improving the state of fish stocks, the well-being of coastal communities and the fishing industry.
© WWF-Canon / Quentin BATES Enlarge