Fisheries Council agreed on fishing quotas in the Baltic Sea

Published

Targeted cod fishing in the eastern Baltic Sea will be banned in 2020, and the opportunities for cod fishing in the western part will be substantially reduced. This was agreed by the EU ministers of agriculture and fisheries on 14–15 October. Minister for Rural Affairs Jennie Nilsson represented Sweden.

Agreement reached

Every year the European Commission presents proposals for the following year’s fishing catch limits in the Baltic Sea. The European Commission’s proposals for 2020 regulate the species cod, herring, sprat, salmon and plaice. Fishing quotas were an important item on the agenda when the agriculture and fisheries ministers met on 14–15 October. After many hours of negotiations, the ministers reached an agreement.

“I am satisfied with the results of the negotiations, we had the aim of coming as close as possible to the European Commission's proposal and we achieved this yesterday,” says Minister for Rural Affairs Jennie Nilsson.

Ban on targeted cod fishing in the east

The decision entails the following:

- Targeted fishing of eastern Baltic cod will be banned, possible by-catch may amount to a maximum of 2000 tonnes.

-  Fishing opportunities regarding cod in the western Baltic Sea will be reduced by 60 per cent in relation to 2019.

- Herring fishing in the western Baltic Sea will be reduced by 65 per cent.

“I am most pleased that we managed to attain levels that are well within the range of what can be regarded as sustainable fishing. In this way we can ensure that future generations will also be able to fish,” says Ms Nilsson.

The Common Agricultural Policy

In June 2018, the European Commission presented a proposal for reforming the Common Agricultural Policy. The proposal has been discussed at several levels since then, and the Finnish Chair informed the meeting about the situation regarding the negotiations.

“We have come a long way in many areas.  But work still remains at the technical level, particularly with regard to green architecture and its forms,” says Ms Nilsson.

Other issues discussed at the Agriculture and Fisheries Council on 14-15 October included a new forestry strategy, African swine fever, US penalty tariffs and the market situation.

Minister for Rural Affairs Jennie Nilsson represented Sweden at the meeting in Luxembourg.