This week: Parliament votes on external dimension, shark finning & more

The European Parliament will vote on several fisheries files this week, including the external (international) dimension of the reform of the Common Fisheries Policy.

External dimension of the CFP
28% of fish caught by the EU fleet are caught outside EU waters, while 60% of fish consumed in the EU is imported. The resolution on the CFP’s external dimension calls for tightening up of fisheries partnership agreements with non-EU countries to prevent abusive reflagging and to include a human rights clause. The report also treats foreign investment, illegal fishing, joint ventures, trade, flags of non-compliance, and other aspects of the external dimension of the CFP. This is a non-legislative initiative report, following the Commission’s communication, but the results will influence the provisions on the international fisheries policy in the basic regulation of the CFP.
Rapporteur: Isabella Lövin (Greens/EFA, SE)
Procedure file: External dimension of the Common Fisheries Policy

Shark finning
The Commission has proposed to close the existing loopholes in the EU ban on ‘shark finning’, which is the practice of catching sharks, removing their fins and throwing the carcass back into the water. With the Commission proposal, shark fins would have to remain attached to the body. The Fisheries Committee adopted conflicting amendments, but MEPs from several groups have tabled amendments to make sure the report results in an unequivocal ban on shark finning.
Rapporteur: Maria do Céu Patrão Neves (EPP, PT)
Procedure file: Fish stock conservation: removal of fins of sharks on board vessels

Fisheries agreement with Greenland
The rapporteur recommends adopting the new EU/Greenland fisheries agreement.
Rapporteur: Ole Christensen (S&D, DK)
Procedure file: EC/Denmark/Greenland Fisheries Parnership Agreement: fishing opportunities and financial contribution from 1 January 2013 to 31 December 2015. Protocol

Salmon in the Baltic sea
With Baltic salmon river stocks under threat, MEPs will vote on a multiannual plan for sustainable salmon fishing in the Baltic Sea Region.
Rapporteur: Marek Józef Gróbarczyk (ECR, PL)
Procedure file: Fish stock conservation: multiannual plan for the Baltic salmon stock

Technical measures
Technical measures are the detailed regulations concerning fishing activities, such things as mesh sizes in the nets, the minimum size of fish that can be brought ashore, etc. The Commission proposed a regulation that would put the technical measures into line with the Lisbon Treaty without changing the content of the rules, but Scottish and Irish MEPs pushed through a number of amendments that were opposed by the Commission and the Council. Since the current rules expire on 31 December 2012 and new rules are needed, Council gave in and the Parliament will vote on a first reading agreement.
Rapporteur: Pat the Cope Gallagher (ALDE, IE)
Procedure file: Conservation of fishery resources through technical measures for the protection of juveniles of marine organisms

Small-scale fisheries in the CFP reform
This is not a legislative proposal, but an initiative report on the importance of small-scale and artisanal fisheries in Europe in relation to the CFP reform.
Rapporteur: João Ferreira (GUE, PT)
Procedure file: Small scale and artisanal fisheries and the CFP reform

All these reports will be debated on Wednesday 21 November and voted on Thursday 22 November, except for the Greenland agreement which will be voted on Tuesday. Find the agenda and more information on the files on the European Parliament’s Séance en Direct site and newsletter for the Fisheries files of the November session.

Once the votes are over, find the results on

Axel Naver

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