16.01.2013

"This is already the fifth year that the plan for cod stocks in the Baltic Sea has been in force and according to scientific data, a significant increase in cod stocks has been observed. However, in light of the Lisbon Treaty in force there was a need to amend and align the multi-annual plan. The most important changes which were voted today are updating the value of fishing mortality and allowing small-scale fishermen to fish cod during the closed season, particularly during summer months, with no negative effect on pre-spawning and spawning concentrations. This may prove economically important for this fleet segment as prices during the relevant period are high", said Jarosław Wałęsa MEP, Rapporteur on changes to the plan for cod stocks in the Baltic Sea.

"The European Parliament recognises that the said plan leads to the renewal of the stock. However, certain shortcomings had to be addressed, such as a lack of flexibility. It is the key to adjusting fishing opportunities with changing conditions of the cod stocks. Today's vote meets the needs of the sector representatives, as well as recognising that the future plans and reforms must take into account the specificity of the area, fostering the regionalisation", said Jarosław Wałęsa.

The next step, before the Regulation comes into force, is trialogues with the European Commission and the Council. Unfortunately, due to the dispute over powers between the Parliament and the Council, the entry-into-force of these provisions may be significantly delayed. The dispute concerns the allocation of fishing opportunities. The Council, which for years has stated that it has exclusive competence in this area, is blocking the work on the multi-annual management plans.

"The situation has a negative impact on the developing legislation in fisheries, aggravates relations between the Institutions and deserves to be condemned", concluded Jarosław Wałęsa.

For further information:
Jarosław Leszek WAŁĘSA MEP, Tel: +33-3-88-175304
Katarzyna Klaus, EPP Group Press and Communications Service, Tel: +32-484-138359

Notes to Editors:
The EPP Group is by far the largest political group in the European Parliament with 270 Members and 3 Croatian Observer Members.

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