Fisheries Minister Richard Benyon said: This is a very positive result for the UK. Not only have we secured an agreement to catch the same amount of cod as last year, when initially faced with a proposed 20 per cent cut, we have also agreed a 15 per cent increase in our quota to catch haddock.
Ive made it very clear on a number of occasions that the Cod Recovery Plan has failed to deliver. Now we have a chance to turn this around. This year our fishermen wont have to discard as many fish. There is now a chance for stocks to recover and for fishing to happen more sustainably. This is good news for both the industry and the health of our seas.
Talks have been taking place since Tuesday 15 January between the EU and Norway to decide quotas for North Sea Cod and North East Atlantic Mackerel for 2013. All other quotas were agreed during the annual December negotiations. It was not possible to reach an agreement due to internal EU procedures and management arrangements for North Sea cod which is jointly managed with Norway. However, the cod recovery plan was amended in December so that it is no longer necessary to have an annual 20 per cent reduction in cod quotas.
Agreement results for background:
- Agreement to rollover of 2012 TAC for North Sea cod and continuation of Fully Documented Fishery scheme with 12% incentive. (UK quota will again be 10,311 tonnes.)
- North Sea haddock, saithe and plaice TACs each to be increased by 15% to 45,041 tonnes, 91,220 tonnes and 97,070 tonnes respectively. UK quotas will be 29,194 tonnes, 7,266 tonnes and 25,923 tonnes.
- North Sea whiting TAC to increase by 11% to 18,932 tonnes (UK 11,698 tonnes)
- North Sea herring TAC to increase by 18% to 478,000 tonnes (UK 68,246 tonnes)
- The EU will receive a quota of 18,202 tonnes of cod at North Norway.