Quota agreement reached for northeast Atlantic mackerel

The European Union, Norway and the Faroe Islands reached an agreement on Wednesday, 19 October regarding how they will share the 2017 quota for northeast Atlantic mackerel.

The agreement, which follows guidance from the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea, sets the total allowable catch for northeast Atlantic mackerel at 1,020,996 metric tons (MT), up 14 percent from the 2016 quota of 895,900 MT.

Of the 2017 total quota, The E.U. will receive 503,245 MT, Norway will receive 229,821 MT, the Faroe Islands will get 128,655 MT and the remaining countries in the fishery, including coastal states such as Ireland, will receive 159,275 MT.

As part of the E.U. bloc – potentially for the last time after the Brexit vote – the U.K. received a quota of around 240,000 tonnes.

The 2017 mackerel quota for Irish fishermen for 2017 will be 86,429 MT – an increase of more than 10,500 MT from 2016. The new total is valued at approximately EUR 86 million (USD 94.3 million),

“We welcome that agreement has been reached at this stage in the annual negotiating process as it brings stability and certainty to the 2017 fishery,” Scottish Pelagic Fishermen’s Association chief executive Ian Gatt said. “The good news is that according to the science, the stock is in good health, which has enabled an increase in the quota that also ensures the sustainability of the fishery.”

The negotiations took place in Clonakilty, County Cork, Ireland on 18 and 19 October, and included delegations from Ireland, the U.K., France, Germany, Spain, the Netherlands, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Iceland and the Faroe Islands, with representatives of Russia and Greenland participating as observers, according to the West Cork Times.

“The quotas agreed for 2017 are consistent with the long-term management strategy agreed by the parties last year to provide sustainability and stability in this hugely valuable fishery in line with the scientific advice,” Irish Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Michael Creed told the newspaper.



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