The Danish fishing industry is being put under pressure by the Commission according to the DFA Chairman, Svend-Erik Andersen
The fishing industry in Denmark is being put under further pressure by the European Commission according to the Danish Fishermen’s Association.
That is the view from the organisation after the Commission presented their quota proposals for fishing in the Baltic Sea 2021, which includes reductions in quotas for several of the most important species.
The Association says that it creates great frustration in the fishing industry, which calls on EU fisheries ministers to listen to the biologists of the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES), who point out that there is a possibility of larger quotas without compromising the protection of stocks.
“Unfortunately, I can not say that I am surprised that the European Commission has again chosen an approach that makes it difficult to be a fisherman. It is annoying when there is actually room for maneuver to set quotas higher without affecting fish stocks. That approach makes it difficult to maintain fishing. Especially when it’s evolving into an annual event. Therefore, it is crucial that the EU fisheries ministers fight for commercial fishing in the upcoming quota negotiations,” says a disappointed chairman of the Danish Fisheries Association, Svend-Erik Andersen.
Looking more closely at the European Commission’s proposal, it is clear that quotas for herring and cod in particular have been reduced. As these are two very important fisheries, that decision creates annoyance at the Danish Fisheries Association.
“It will inevitably cost jobs. Both in the fishing industry and in the secondary industries. This can have major consequences for the small port communities, such as on Bornholm, where fishing helps to keep the ports going. We hope that the Danish Minister of Fisheries, Mogens Jensen, is aware of this when he travels to Brussels to negotiate the fishing quotas in place,” says Svend-Erik Andersen.
The Association claims that in addition to falling quotas, the quota proposal also contains rules that make life difficult for Danish fishermen. This applies, for example, to closure periods in the western Baltic Sea, which make fishing for cod more difficult, despite the fact that there is no evidence that closure periods have a positive effect on the cod stock. It is to the great frustration of the fishing industry that calls for better dialogue between politicians, the research world and the fishing industry.
“Time and time again, we experience that messy rules are drawn down on the fishery on the basis of gut feeling and simplifications. It simply does not work. There is a need for a better dialogue between politicians, research institutions and fisheries so that together we can find effective ways to protect, exploit and manage fish stocks. The future of commercial fishing depends on the positive development of stocks. Therefore, we should be able to cooperate more and better,” is the call from Kim Kær Hansen, vice chairman of the Danish Fisheries Association PO and chairman of the Baltic Sea Committee.
It is expected that the fishing opportunities in the Baltic Sea for 2021 will fall into place on 20 October, when agreement is usually reached in the EU Council of Ministers.