Greenpeace: Spain hoarding subsidies
By SeafoodSource staff
03 October, 2011
Greenpeace on Sunday published a report claiming that the 30-year-old Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) has failed to support sustainable fisheries and prevent overfishing.
Furthermore, the environmental activist organization blames a broken CFP for allowing Spain to “prioritize the short-term financial interests of its industrial-scale fishing fleet at the expense of long-term sustainable fisheries management.” The Spanish fishing fleet is due to receive more than EUR 1 billion in subsidies from 2007 and 2013, allowing “this powerful minority [to reap a] disproportionate share,” according to Greenpeace.
Greenpeace also accuses the Spanish fishing fleet of engaging in illegal, unregulated and unreported (IUU) fishing while receiving subsidies. Industrial-scale operators are well organized and well represented and are therefore “well positioned to exert influence on politicians and bureaucrats in both Spain and at a European level.”
Spain’s small-scale fishermen are losing out, despite that they represent more than three-quarters of the Spanish fishing fleet. “Yet they do not benefit from the CFP like the industrial-scale operators do, and often can’t be heard above the bellowing of the industrial-scale sector in important EU meetings in Brussels,” declared Greenpece.
European Union Fisheries Commissioner Maria Damanaki immediately responded to the report: “The serious allegations are already under investigation by the European Commission and being followed up with the Spanish national authorities. We are establishing all facts in order to pursue breaches.”
The Greenpeace report comes on the same day that an International Consortium of Investigative Journalists investigation was released accusing the Spainish fishing fleet of receiving more than EUR 5.8 billion in subsidies since 2000, which it used to “build its bloated fleet and prop up a money-losing industry.”
Click here to download the Greenpeace report.
03 October, 2011