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Mackerel Talks Fail To Reach Agreement

Sustainability Politics

GENERAL - EU and Norwegian talks in Oslo have failed to reach an agreement with Iceland on a joint management plan for the mackerel stock for 2011.

However, there is some encouragement that the Faroese are still willing to negotiate despite no agreement being reached today. New talks between the EU, Norway and the Faroes will resume in Copenhagen on 9 and 10 December in the hope of reaching a three-party agreement.

Ian Gatt, chief executive of the Scottish Pelagic Fishermen’s Association, said: “We are bitterly disappointed that Iceland does not see the need to find a deal this year and have walked away from the talks.

“This effectively means that Iceland will set its own quota for 2011 and not be part of a joint management plan for the stock with the other main stakeholders in the fishery. We believe that joint management involving all coastal states is essential to ensure that this valuable resource is fished sustainably. It is a great pity that Iceland does not seem to recognise the importance of integrated and sensible management.

“It is encouraging, however, that the Faroese are still talking as they have been part of a long standing international agreement for many years and hopefully their willingness to continue to negotiate will result in a three-party deal with the EU and Norway in the coming weeks.”