The SFPA has welcomed the ruling by the European Court of Justice regarding FU16
The Sea-Fisheries Protection Authority (SFPA) welcomes the ruling by the European Court of Justice (ECJ) that the SFPA, Ireland’s sea-fisheries regulator, can submit data other than fishermen’s declarations of their catches to the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine and the European Commission.
The data are used for many purposes including assessing how much of fishing quotas have been used and how much remains to be caught. The ECJ ruling endorses a decision by the High Court that the SFPA can use reasonable, scientifically valid methods and data to certify data logged by fishermen so as to achieve more accurate catch figures, when they consider fishermen’s declarations unreliable.
Paschal Hayes, Executive Chairperson, SFPA stated: “Fishermen should accurately declare their catches, and the SFPA should not have to consider second-guessing legal declarations. Protection of Ireland’s marine resources is critical to sustaining their future and we will continue to use all tools available to deter and detect over-fishing, ensuring fishers comply and Ireland’s data are as accurate as possible.”
The case arose following an assessment by SFPA of a mismatch between time spent in different areas and proportion of catches logged. As a consequence, the SFPA data that was provided was based on the total catches declared on fishermen’s log sheets as assessed against the actual fishing operations logged by the fishermen (including time spent) for their fishing activity in FU16 (the Porcupine area) in 2017, and not according to the catch area declared.
Source: Press Release