“We have to be careful in using marine resources so that they are still available in the future,” Ulrike Rodust (S&D) said on Monday 21 May, when she presented her draft report on the main CFP document – the basic regulation – in the Fisheries Committee.
Ulrike Rodust wants Member States to establish protected areas where no fishing is allowed, in at least 10 percent of their waters. This proposal met strong reactions from UK MEPs – Ian Hudghton (Greens/EFA), Struan Stevenson (ECR) and Diane Dodds (NI) – who said they could not accept banning fishing in such a large part of the sea.
Planning for the negotiations with Council
Several MEPs looked ahead and said that the European Parliament needs to adopt a strong position on the basic regulation before the negotiations with the Council later in the reform process.
Chris Davies (ALDE) welcomed Rodust’s proposal to achieve maximum sustainable yield (MSY) by 2015 and forcing Council to set quotas according to the fishing mortality Fmsy for stocks that are without a multiannual management plan. He further noted that ministers in a recent Council meeting wanted to avoid commitments on MSY. He said that the European Parliament needs a strong position on MSY, because the Parliament will need to compromise with the Council later.
Raül Romeva i Rueda (Greens/EFA) said that the ministers in Council only seem to be influenced by some segments of the fishing industry, and that the European Parliament has an obligation to listen to other stakeholders, such as consumer groups, environmental NGOs and other civil society groups.
Pat the Cope Gallagher (ALDE) said, “I get the impression that Council ignores the European Parliament and takes us for granted.” He said he supports Rodust’s proposal that the European Parliament should have a delegation present when Council sets fishing quotas.
A new timetable for the basic regulation was announced by the chair of the committee:
Deadline for amendments: 18.6.2012
Exchange of views on the amendments: 16.9.2012
Vote in Committee: 9.10.2012
Vote in plenary: November 2012
This change was decided after several political groups had asked for more time to work with the basic regulation.