The MMO secured extra quota, and a further 50 tonnes is now available.
Liz Humphreys, Chief Marine Officer said “We are committed to keeping fishermen up to date, and the handline west coast mackerel fishery was listed in our weekly website notices detailing the potential closure. This does not mean the fishery was to close, and we have been working hard to gain extra quota.
"The fishery remains open with the extra quota secured, and we recognise the importance of the handline mackerel fishery for its sustainable and low impact fishing method.”
Quotas are set annually by the European Commission, and the MMO has the difficult balancing task of ensuring that stocks are managed throughout the year to maximise the fishing opportunities for the UK industry, whilst ensuring that stocks are not overfished and the UK government and taxpayer does not have to pay steep penalties.
The MMO has helped to gain nearly £4million worth of fish for the inshore fleet in 2010 so far, through arranging swaps and gifts of quota. Quotas worth £1.5 million were swapped out in the same period, giving a £2.5 million gain for the industry as a whole.
The west coast mackerel fishery (excluding handliners in areas VIIe to VIIh) is closed for the under 10 metre pool.