Iceland EU membership talks start: Common Fisheries Policy will be major issue

Talks to negotiate the accession of Iceland to the EU began at an Intergovermental Conference in Brussels on 27 July.  The EU Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) and Iceland’s whale hunt are likely to be hurdles as the negotiations progress.

During the Ministerial level conference the EU acknowledged that serious efforts would be needed in a number of areas, including fisheries. Iceland, whose economy is heavily dependent on fisheries, has already clearly stated in the general position on accession that the government wishes to maintain control of fisheries management in its exclusive economic zone, which would be a derogation from the open access rules of the CFP.

The accession talks are expected to take between 12 and 18 months to complete.

EU Council press release on opening of accession negotiations, 27 July

Iceland Foreign Ministry press release, 27 July

EU Negotiating Framework on accession of Iceland to EU

General Position of Government of Iceland on accession to EU

Icelandic Foreign Ministry accession website

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