The European Commission has presented its proposal for total allowable catches (TACs) and quotas for the Baltic Sea in 2011.
Following positive scientific advice on stock levels from the International Council for the Exploration of the Seas (ICES), increases in catch levels are proposed for both Eastern and Western cod stocks, of 6% and 15% respectively.
But the pelagic stocks, herring and sprat, are considered to be in a poor state, with the western herring stock falling to record low levels. Thus the Commission has proposed significant TAC reductions of up to 30%, although in some cases the reductions are less than those advised by ICES scientists. Slow reproduction and high fishing pressure are cited as the key reasons for the decline in stocks.
Salmon too has a proposal for reductions in catch rates.
The TACs and quotas for the Baltic are scheduled to be agreed by EU Fisheries Ministers at their Council meeting on 25 October