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Zero Quotas Proposed for 2016 Black Sea Turbot, Dogfish

Sustainability Economics Politics +2 more

EU - The European Commission has proposed its fishing opportunities for the Black Sea in 2016.

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Member States concerned by the proposals in the Black Sea are Bulgaria and Romania.

The Commission proposes to maintain the EU autonomous quota for sprat at 11,475 tons for the Black Sea. The EU autonomous quotas for sprat are set respectively at 70 per cent for Bulgaria and 30 per cent for Romania.

For turbot and dogfish, a zero quota is proposed. STECF has highlighted that the situation for both turbot and dogfish has been deteriorating progressively in the last years. This is a situation that requires urgent action for both stocks.

STECF has recommended zero catches for the fourth consecutive year for turbot. In previous years Romania and Bulgaria have proposed to increase the controls on catches of turbot to reduce illegal and unreported fishing.

Nevertheless, the effort made by both countries has not been sufficient enough to address the severity of the situation and status of the stock.

With respect to dogfish, STECF has recommended zero catches for the third consecutive year due to the fact that the stock continues to face drastic depletion.

The Commission has also taken into consideration the fact that the two EU countries account for nearly as much as 50 per cent of catches, and also the fact that elasmobranch species (such as sharks, rays and skates) which include dogfish are important for preserving the overall balance of the marine ecosystem.

The proposed measure is also consistent with that adopted for dogfish stock in the Atlantic for 5 consecutive years.

The proposal will now be discussed by EU ministers at the December's Fisheries Council.