Reform package will contain six parts – and it will be late

Commission answers parliamentary question on reform timetable.

With the Commission expected to deliver its proposal for a new Common Fisheries Policy later this year, many people want to know when the proposal will come and what it will contain.

In an answer to a written question asked by MEP Chris Davies (ALDE), the Commission gives two pieces of information.

First, the reform package will contain six different parts. Second, the Commission no longer commits to present the reform package in May, a date which had previously been indicated. Instead, fisheries commissioner Maria Damanaki writes that the reform package is “envisaged later in 2011.”

Chris Davies said: “It’s so very rare for the Commission to keep to the deadlines that it sets itself that slippage in the timetable was only to be expected. Nothing we have heard from Commissioner Damanaki suggests that she wants to weaken the proposals, but she recognises that she needs to ensure that they address as many as possible of the arguments likely to be put up by her critics. I hope that late means ‘better’.”

“Having the reform proposals come in the shape of a series of different documents is helpful. It means that in the Parliament it is likely that each one will be led by someone from a different political group, so vested interests will have less chance to prevail.”

READ THE ANSWER FROM THE COMMISSION:

Question for written answer E-000835/2011
Chris Davies (ALDE)
Subject: Timetable for Common Fisheries Policy reform

Will the Commission indicate the timetable to which it is working in order to put in place new regulations under the Common Fisheries Policy by 31 December 2012?

E-000835/2011
Answer given by Ms Damanaki
on behalf of the Commission

The adoption of the reform package for the Common Fisheries Policy by the College of Commissioners is envisaged later in 2011.

The package will contain:
– a proposal for a new basic regulation (to replace Council Regulation 2371/2002[1]),
– a proposal for a new regulation on the market policy (to replace Council Regulation 104/2000),
– a proposal for the future financial instrument 2014-2020 in support of the Common Fisheries Policy,
– an overarching Communication on the reform of the Common Fisheries Policy,
– a Communication on the external dimension of the Common Fisheries Policy and
– a Report on certain provisions in the current basic regulation (on chapters II and III, and on article 17.1 of Council Regulation 2371/2002).

Council Regulation 2371/2002 of 20 December 2002 on the conservation and sustainable exploitation of fisheries resources under the Common Fisheries Policy will remain in force until a new regulation has been adopted except a provision in its Article 17.2 on access rules and restrictions for the 12 nautical miles waters which expires on 31 December 2012. If a new basic regulation is not agreed before that date, the provisions under this article will no longer apply. In order to avoid this, the Commission would propose in time a prolongation of the relevant articles, to be adopted in co-decision procedure.

Axel Naver

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