The Danish Fishermen’s Association held its annual general meeting today
Today, the Danish Fishermen’s Association, which is the main organisation for Danish fishermen, held its annual general meeting.
And this year is something very special. For it is the first time in a long time that the fisheries sector is coming together. It is happening on the back end of an unusually hard year for Danish fishing. Not least Brexit has cost Danish fishing dearly, but in addition, 2020 has offered a cocktail of declining fishing opportunities and low prices on the European market as a result of the corona pandemic. Many fishermen have lost 25 percent. of their turnover in 2020. The situation in Danish fisheries is serious, and major changes are needed if Danish fisheries are to continue to be able to contribute to growth and important jobs.
“As chairman of the Danish fishermen, I must admit that we in Danish fisheries face great challenges. That is why we use today’s general meeting to look each other in the eye and to present our proposals for how we can ensure that Denmark can remain a proud fishing nation,” says Svend-Erik Andersen, chairman of the Danish Fisheries Association.
At the general meeting, the Danish Fishermen’s Association presents the proposal “The Danes’ Fishermen – the course towards a common future”, where the fishermen come up with a number of proposals for how fishing can turn the tide. One of the proposals is that there is a need for a fleet adjustment and reduce the number of fishing vessels, so that in the future there will be fewer fishing vessels in Denmark.
“Although it is a heavy message, I have no doubt. There are too many fishing vessels in Denmark as the country is now, and we must have changed that. It is simply a prerequisite for us to be able to turn the tide and ensure a profitable and sustainable fishery in the future,” says Svend-Erik Andersen.
Specifically, the fishing industry has a desire for parts of the so-called Brexit reserve to be brought into play for a scrapping scheme in addition to the compensation to which the affected fishermen are also entitled.
“There is no doubt that Brexit has cost Danish fishing dearly. Therefore, it can only go too slowly to ensure compensation for the fishery and support to implement a fleet adjustment in Danish fisheries,” says Svend-Erik Andersen.
With the proposal, the Danish Fisheries Association also sends a clear signal that they are ready for a broad collaboration to strengthen Danish fisheries and make the industry ready for the future, just as the proposal contains proposals to ensure better management of fisheries, development of future fishing gear and ensure that Danish fisheries remain one of the world’s most sustainable fisheries.
Specifically, it is proposed that a new development centre for Danish fisheries be established. It must be located in a port city in North or West Jutland – where the fishing is. In addition, a new model is proposed for coastal fishing, how future fisheries control can be organized and how Denmark can become a more leading player in the EU for the benefit of the Danish fishermen who struggle on a daily basis with a comprehensive set of rules that has roots in the EU.
“It is our ambition that the fishery should develop in such a way that the fishery can continue to contribute important jobs around the fishing ports. We want to be the Danes’ fishermen. Therefore, of course, we must also continue the work on sustainability and to ensure a healthy marine environment. We believe that we can go a long way with this initiative,” concludes Svend-Erik Andersen.