EC slaps Spain with quota deduction
The European Commission is reducing the size of Spanish mackerel quotas after determining that the nation’s fisheries have overfished their mackerel stocks by thousands of metric tons (MT), according to a statement from the commission.
The decision, handed down this week, requires a series of deductions to the Spanish quotas, to take place over the next decade, with a scheduled end date of 2023. In a statement, the commission indicated the move is designed to protect Spanish mackerel stocks.
“The Commission had serious doubts about the true levels of mackerel fishing registered in Spain in 2009, following inconsistencies between the data collected regarding catches and the sales of mackerel,” the commission said in a statement.
According to the commission, the decision follows “a detailed investigation” which determined that Spain needs to “pay back” approximately 65,429 MT of mackerel due to overfishing.
"Enforcement of fisheries rules is the flipside of sustainability,” said Maria Damanaki, commissioner for maritime affairs. “When overshooting happens, the damage done to the stocks must be repaired.”
The commission also indicated it was working with the Spanish government to put plans in place to make sure this never has to happen again.