In a joint letter 8 Member States outline their position on the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF), which concerns future public financing of the fisheries sector.
The letter, addressed to the EU Fisheries Commissioner, Maria Damanaki, and the EU Presidency, was signed by France, Spain, Poland, Malta, Ireland, Portugal, Slovenia and Lithuania.
They demand maintenance of subsidies for both the modernisation and decommissioning of vessels, which the Commission is proposing to end during the current reform.
The signatories argue that the new Fisheries Fund should “contribute to support modernisation” of fishing vessels and reduce the environmental impact of fishing through their improved energy efficiency, which should include the replacement and modernisation of propulsion systems and gear.
Moreover, the letter states that in order to meet the requirement of Maximum Sustainable Yield, “The Member States that so wish should be allowed to provide public aid to adjust fleet capacity…. through temporary or permanent cessation of fishing activities”.