Commercial fisheries and aquaculture are Australia’s fifth most valuable rural industry, consisting primarily of low-volume, high-value species for export. Volume and value have been negatively affected by changes in a number of important variables, like rising fuel prices, the appreciation of the Australian dollar, and increased competition on the domestic market from low value imports.
Canada’s Fisheries Act of 1869 is currently undergoing a renewal process to include modern management approaches, including the precautionary and ecosystem approach. Under the overall objective of improved sustainability, this new legal framework also envisages improved strengthened surveillance and enforcement measures.
For the period 2007-2013, a new Council Regulation establishes a European Fisheries Fund (EFF) which succeeds the previous Financial Instrument of Fisheries Guidance (FIFG). The EFF is designed to secure a sustainable European fishing and aquaculture industry. The fund will both support the industry as it adapts its fleet to make it more competitive and promote measures to protect and enhance the environment. It will also help fisheries communities most affected to diversify their economic base.
The number of Belgian fishing vessels decreased from 120 in 2005 to 107 in 2006, partly by scrapping of vessels and partly by incorporating engine capacity from withdrawn vessels to existing vessels. In 2007, the number of fishing vessels decreased once again to 102 vessels with a total capacity of 60 620 kW (+0.7%) and 19 292 GT (–4%).
The Czech Republic is a landlocked country with no sea fisheries but important aquaculture (pond-based) production of carp. Carp breeding is rooted in the history, culture and society of the Czech Republic and has proved highly profitable since the 15th century. The Czech Republic has over 24 000 ponds and tanks, mostly in southern Bohemia covering a total of around 50 000 ha.
In 2005 a decision was taken on a major reform of the national regulation of demersal fisheries. The reform has led to more individual fisheries management as well as a higher degree of ownership of fishing rights for the individual fisherman. The reform follows similar regulation reforms for pelagic and industrial fisheries. As a consequence the number of commercially active vessels in the Danish fleet fell substantially in the period 2005-2007.
Total commercial marine catch was 81 322 tonnes in 2005 with a value of EUR 13.6 million. Catch since then has increased to 101 092 tonnes in 2006 (value: EUR 18.0 million) and 111 971 tonnes in 2007 (value EUR 19.6 million).
In 2006, almost 30% of marine products came from aquaculture. Oysters and mussels accounted for the bulk of aquaculture output. In 2008, the quotas awarded to France under Council Regulation (EC) No. 40/2008 of 16 January 2008, amounted to 287 308 tonnes. However, through transfers with other member states, France was able to increase its fishing opportunities to 300 634 tonnes (mainly sole, mackerel, cod, anglerfish, black scabbardfish, nephrops and bluefin tuna).
In 2007, the German fisheries sector experienced an increase in both landings and values as compared with previous years. Rapidly increasing fuel prices, however, had a negative impact on the overall result. With a degree of self-sufficiency of merely 24%, the processing industry plus consumers in Germany are still heavily dependent on imports from other EU member states and from third countries.
The marine fisheries and aquaculture sector are very important to Greece due to its economic, social and cultural contribution to coastal areas, both for islands and mainland Greece. Significant aquaculture development has resulted in remarkable results not only regarding the production of domestic fresh, cheap and high quality fish (especially seabass and gilthead seabream), but also the creation of a socio-economic structure that directly and indirectly involves thousands of employees, particularly in the fisheries-dependent areas of the country. In addition, mariculture is the only productive activity that has colonized uninhabited islands and rock-islands which are normally excluded from other investments.
The need to ensure sustainable development of fisheries remains of the highest priority, with scientific advice remaining pessimistic for many stocks. At national level, the National Seafood Strategy Report was launched in January 2007 followed by the constitution of an implementation group representing each aspect of the seafood industry, state agencies and the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food.
Over the past years few years, fish production has shown a steady decline. In the period 2000 to 2007, landings decreased by 40%. The persistency of productive decline is mainly related to the reduction of activity and capacity that affected most fleet segments. In 2007, total fish catch was 267 368 tonnes, a decrease of 6% compared to 2006. The value of landings amounted to EUR 1.3 billion. In comparison with 2006, the value of landings fell by 11%.
In 2007, the Dutch fisheries sector experienced a decrease in quota for its main species, sole and plaice. With increasing fuel prices, this had an overall negative impact on the Dutch marine fisheries sector. An additional consequence is that the processing industry in the Netherlands is increasingly dependent on imports from the EU and third countries.
Portugal has drawn up a national strategy for the fishing industry, namely the National Strategic Plan for Fisheries (PEN) for 2007-2013. More specifically, it also approved the Operational Program for Fisheries 2007-2013 (PROMAR) and drew up the necessary regulations.
The fisheries sector in the Slovak Republic consists of aquaculture and fish processing. There is no commercial marine and inland capture fishery.
Following the recent ministerial restructuring, which has seen the emergence of a new Ministry of the Environment and the Rural and Marine Environment, Spain will further pursue the consolidation of fisheries as a responsible economic activity in every way, consistent with a marine ecosystem-based approach. Spain will therefore be continuing its initiatives to reinforce measures against illegal, undeclared and unregulated fishing.
At the beginning of the 21st century, both revenues and profitability decreased in the Swedish saltwater fisheries: between 2002 and 2005 the value of landings dropped by nearly 25%, and between 2005 and 2007 the volume of landings decreased by 8%. However, the value of landings increased during 2005 and 2007 by 22% as a result of increasing fish prices.
The UK continues to develop its policy strategy both domestically as well as pushing forward the global agenda on lllegal, Unregulated and Unreported fishing (IUU). In 2007, a 20-year strategy called Fisheries 2027 was published to guide future fisheries policy and provide direction for everyone with an interest in marine fisheries. Defra also published a draft implementation plan in October 2007 called Delivering Fisheries 2027 which it is developing with stakeholders into a shared long-term contract to achieve sustainable fisheries.
The Ministry of Fisheries and Agriculture decided in 2007 to follow the recommendations of The Icelandic Marine Research Institute and cut cod quotas by 30% to 130 000 tonnes for the next 1-2 years, so as to expedite the growth of the stock, especially in view of the enhanced likelihood of stronger recruitment in the years to come. This decision will be a painful one in the short term. However, it is considered important to protect the long-term interests of all who benefit from the exploitation of the cod stocks near Iceland. It is also consistent with responsible fisheries management and is an element in guaranteeing the sustainability of the fish stocks.
In 2007, Japan amended its Basic Fishery Plan, originally established in 2002, in order to take into account changes in Japanese fisheries and food supply. Under the broad guideline of the Basic Plan, Japan has developed and implemented resource recovery plans on various species and fishing types. The number of resource recovery plans has increased rapidly in recent years. As of February 2008, 51 plans have been established or under development.
In order to achieve responsible fisheries, Korea established a 10-year stock recovery plan in 2005. The plan was applied to four species in 2006 and expanded to seven species in 2007. Korea has started to mange squid resources under the TAC system and 10 species are currently managed by that system. In addition, a special law was legislated in 2004 to root out illegal fishing by small bottom trawl boats and 2 468 boats were scraped in 2005 and 2006 according to the Act.
The Fisheries and Aquaculture Policy of the Mexican government is based on a long-term vision to promote national development and competitiveness. Key policy documents are the National Development Plan and the Sector Program for Farming and Fishing of the Secretariat of Agriculture, Livestock and Rural Development, Fishing and Food of the United Mexican States.
Fisheries policy activities in 2006 and 2007 included the development of an objectives-based approach to fisheries management through fisheries plans. These will state what is needed to be achieved for a fishery (objectives) and the implementation strategies to achieve those objectivesincluding research, regulations, and compliance.
In March 2007 the White Paper titled, "Structural policy for the Norwegian fishing fleet" was presented to the Norwegian Parliament. The paper proposed management instruments to promote efficiency and profitability in the fishing fleet. The proposals in the White Paper were also a continuation of the Structural Quota (SQS) System implemented in the coastal fleet in 2004 and the SQS in the ocean going fleet implemented from 2005, but with some modifications. A time limit of 20 years on the structural quotas was re-introduced (25 years for previously-allocated quotas), and the SQS in the coastal fleet was introduced for vessels between 11 and 15 metres from 2008.
Capture fishery production in Poland has substantially decreased over the last decades and the trend continued in 2007 and 2008. This is the result of a decrease in catches in the Baltic Sea, which contribute about 80% to the total catches. Main species caught by the Polish fishing fleet include sprat, herring and cod.
In line with Turkey’s accession process to the EU, Turkish fisheries policies have been subject to a comprehensive review and new policy instruments have been introduced to create a framework for sustainable fisheries. For example, the Vessel Monitoring System was launched in 2007 for bluefin tuna fishing while the TAC system, currently applied to bluefin tuna and stripped venus clam, is to be extended to other fish species, including anchovy and mackerel.
The reauthorization of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act in 2007 provides an updated legal framework for addressing a wide variety of marine stewardship issues. The reauthorized law mandates a date-certain end to overfishing, promotes market-based management, strengthens the role of science, improves data on recreational fisheries, and includes new measures to combat illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing and to reduce bycatch in global fisheries.
The fishery policy in Argentina intends to reconcile, through an adequate fisheries management scheme, the biological sustainability of stocks with the economic activity related to their exploitation. Main objectives of the fishery policy are the sustainability and profitability of the fishing activity. There are regulations for the annual assignment of fishing rights for some species as a preparatory step to the establishment of a ITQs system foreseen by the Federal Fisheries Law.
A compulsory fleet size reduction program has been in place in Chinese Taipei since 2005. In 2007, Chinese Taipei completed a three-year reduction program of large-scale tuna longliners larger than 100 GRTs, reducing the total number from 614 to 421.
As a result of constitutional changes in Thailand in 2007, more emphasis has been put on the participation of local authorities and stakeholders in establishing and implementing fisheries policies.
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