EU adopts EUR 310 million package for UK fisheries, aquaculture
The European Commission (EC) has adopted a key investment package for the United Kingdom's maritime, fisheries and aquaculture sectors. Approximately EUR 310 million (USD 334.8 million) will be made available under the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF) for the period 2014-2020, of which EUR 243 million (USD 262.4 million) will be EU funds.
"Innovation and sustainability are at the heart of the UK's maritime and fisheries policy. With the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund, the country will be able to focus even more on new technologies that support competitiveness and environmental protection and build on its long-standing tradition in fisheries and leading position in aquaculture. I have no doubt that the fund will help the U.K.'s many maritime sectors to become more sustainable and more competitive in the near future," said Karmenu Vella, EU Commissioner for Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries.
Part of the money will go to help the United Kingdom's fleet transition to sustainable and discard-free fisheries. Across the fisheries, aquaculture and processing supply chains, funds will be injected into innovation, onshore and offshore infrastructure and efficient use of natural resources.
Small businesses will get easier access to capital and it’s hoped a new emphasis on sites' restoration will re-attract people to coastal areas and improve local governance.
Local development initiatives such as Fisheries Local Action Groups (FLAGs) will be encouraged to diversify their economies, bring added-value to their fishing activities and make fisheries and aquaculture communities stronger.
Other funds are destined to develop IT tools and technologies used for control and enforcement and to improve the traceability of fisheries products.
The collection of fisheries data – seen by the EC as vital for sustainable management – are equally sponsored.