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Danish fishermen are unhappy with the outcome of the agreement on the allocation of a mackerel held by them

Mackerel Agreement Costs Danish Fishermen: Quarter of Quota Sacrificed in New Deal

The Danish pelagic sector is unhappy with the outcome on the allocation of a mackerel quota held by their fleet for Norwegian waters.

After two years of negotiations and a hiatus in mackerel fishing, the recent agreement between the EU and Norway comes at a steep cost for Danish fishermen. In a surprising turn of events, the Danish fishermen will now forfeit a quarter of the mackerel quota set aside for them in the Norwegian part of the North Sea.

Since 2021, the lack of a mutual agreement between the EU and Norway had prevented Danish fishermen from accessing their mackerel quota in the Norwegian waters. The prolonged negotiations have finally culminated in a deal, but the ramifications are hitting the Danish fishing industry hard.

Thomas Sloth, Chairman of the Southwest Jutland Fisheries Association and head of the Danish Fisheries Association’s Committee for Industrial and Pelagic Fisheries, expressed his dissatisfaction with the agreement. The deal is not only financially burdensome, costing Danish fishermen over half a billion kroner (€134m/£115m) in quota values, but it also erodes confidence in the fishing agreement framework.

“It’s a lousy deal that will hit really hard. First of all, the sums involved are large, but it also means that you lose confidence in the system when you go in out of the blue and change old and completely fundamental agreements about fishing. I really think that you have slept through the hour with this,” remarked Thomas Sloth.

Acknowledging the drawbacks, Fisheries Minister Jacob Jensen (V) admitted that the agreement fell short of expectations. “We have fought hard to get an agreement on mackerel. Unfortunately, the solution has significant consequences for the Danish mackerel fishery, because we have had to surrender more quota than I would have liked in order to reach an agreement,” said Jacob Jensen.

The Minister emphasised the importance of securing an agreement after a two-year stoppage in mackerel fishing, stating that having 75 percent of the quota is preferable to having nothing at all.

 

Source: Fiskeri Tidende

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