Victory for the sustainability of EU and Maltese fisheries
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After months of intense Brussels negotiations Roderick Galdes, Parliamentary Secretary for Agriculture, Fisheries and Animal Rights, managed to secure an important victory for the sustainability of EU and Maltese fisheries.
The Agriculture and Fisheries Council held on the 15th of July 2013 concluded the Council’s General Approach on the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF) which will now prioritise small scale fisheries in terms of fund allocation.
Malta relentlessly argued that small-scale fisheries engage in the most sustainable fishing practices and that their prioritisation will put the reformed Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) at an advantaged position towards attaining its goals.
Despite strong opposition from industrial fishing Member States the final agreement features the share of small scale vessels as a financial allocation criterion and a number of measures specifically intended to support this sustainable form of fishery.
Mr Galdes noted that he retained such a strong position, not only because Malta’s fleet is predominately small scale, but also because prioritising this fisheries segment will generate employment, guarantee growth, and ensure better sustainability.
The Commission is expected to finalise Member States’ individual allocation soon after an agreement is attained with the European Parliament.
The current text implies that Malta will receive a favourable allocation.