A new fisheries regulation in designated protected sea areas in the Kattegat has entered into force on 11 July 2022.
In both the Danish and Swedish parts of the Kattegat, the new fisheries regulation has been introduced to protect marine nature, says the Danish Fishery Agency.
The European Commission has adopted a delegated regulation as a result of Denmark, Sweden and Germany sending a joint recommendation to the European Commission on the protection of Natura 2000 and offshore strategy areas in the Kattegat. The regulation was published in the Official Journal on 21 June, after which it entered into force on 11 July 2022, 20 days after its publication.
In Danish waters, a ban is introduced on fishing with bottom-dragging gear in six sea strategy areas and in a Natura 2000 area. The restrictions are introduced to protect the seabed habitats in the areas. The Danish marine strategy areas were designated in 2016 after a thorough stakeholder involvement. Among other things, taken into account fishing interests in order to limit the financial consequences of the designations. In Swedish waters, fishing restrictions are introduced in four protected areas. In some of the Swedish areas, a ban on all fishing is introduced. In other parts, fishing with hand gear, pots for shellfish and pelagic float trawls is permitted. However, in these areas, until the end of 2024, it will still be possible to fish with nets if you participate in a national camera monitoring project.
The Swedish protection measures are introduced both to protect the seabed, marine mammals and seabirds. In the areas with a ban on all fishing, the strict protection is introduced to protect all parts of the marine nature.
For control reasons, a zone of four nautical miles is being introduced around the Danish maritime strategy areas, where fishing vessels fishing with bottom trawls must be equipped with a functioning AIS position system class A, which shows where the fishing vessels are located. In Swedish waters, a corresponding requirement for AIS is introduced for all fishing vessels in a larger contiguous area.