EU Fisheries Commissioner, Maria Damanaki, at a meeting with Europeche representatives. (Photo: CE)
Brussels evaluates 'all possibilities' to redirect agreement with Mauritania
Friday, September 21, 2012, 01:40 (GMT + 9)
The Commissioner of Fisheries of the European Union (EU), Maria Damanaki, assured community shipowners that the European Commission (EC) returned from Mauritania with what can be called "the best agreement that could be reached."
However, given the strong opposition expressed by the industry, she promised they will analysed "all the possibilities" to redirect the bilateral fisheries agreement which, among other things, excluded 24 Galician cephalopod vessels.
"We have a problem and need your help to solve it," secretary general of the Spanish Fisheries Confederation (Cepesca) and President of Europêche, Javier Garat, told the commissioner.
The problem is the moored boats and the non-working crew members, damages that in Spain can be temporarily alleviated, as there are grants that have been announced, but in other countries it can not be so, the official added, according to the newspaper La Voz de Galicia.
The new agreement allows 70 EU vessels to fish in the Mauritanian fishing ground, where they can catch shrimp, tuna, demersal and pelagic species.
But Garat emphasized that "to go fishing and use those fishing opportunities imply losing money."
The leader appreciated that Damanaki has expressed being "aware" of the problems the sector complaints about and that she has undertaken to analyse the situation in greater detail.
But he regretted that the European Commissioner has not decided to 'stop' the ratification process of the agreement, the agency Europa Press reported.
Furthermore, the delegate of the Board in Huelva, José Fiscal, reiterated that the regional government and the large-scale fishing industry of the province are "sure" that the agreement "is invalid," Andalucía Información published.
- EC is asked to reconsider agreement with Mauritania
By Analia Murias
Photo Courtesy of FIS Member European Commission - Fisheries and Maritime Affairs