Thursday, 30 May 2013

New CFP? What new CFP?

In response to the Fishing News article of May 24, 2013 [no link available] about the new CFP taking a large step forward, Roddy McColl wrote on behalf of FAL:

Are there any UK fishermen who believe that the Brussels deal will deliver workable measure in key areas? (FN 24 May)

As for Richard Benyon’s statement that British fishermen stood to gain from the changes as under the new rules of regionalisation fishermen “will be part of the process rather than victims of it” that is a masterpiece of propaganda, of hope over reality.

There is no new CFP. How often must we repeat that the real CFP is equal access to the common resource?

Of course there will be changes in various aspects of the EU’s fisheries policy- Common Organisation of the Market, a phased ban on discards and the implementation of MSY with a nod towards decentralisation of the “dysfunctional CFP” to quote Richard Lochhead with the introduction of regionalisation though even that will be a Member State acting as an agent (or agents in a regional context) to implement the grand strategy of the EU.

And that has never changed - the Treaties of Accession make it crystal clear that all species of fish within the waters of all EU maritime nations, are a common resource to which all EU member state’s fishermen have an equal right of access.

Exclusive competence for fisheries lies with the EU not the Member States.

The Commission has gone out of its way for years to make it absolutely clear that the non negotiable “acquis communautaire” for marine fisheries is free access to waters on a non discriminatory basis for all member states fleets, for all species of fish within the waters of all EU maritime nations. The CFP is about establishing an EU fleet, controlled, directed and managed from and by Brussels using compliant Member States as their agents to that end.

For any Minister to say that the current reform process provides one of the biggest opportunities ever to shape the future of the CFP is totally disingenuous.

Worth quoting in those interminable debates in response to those who say that the "new CFP" will be so wonderful and will solve all our problems. It will not.


Post a Comment