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European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries The Common Fisheries Policy - Room for improvement? Hearing om framtiden för EU:s fiskeripolitik.

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Presentation on theme: "European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries The Common Fisheries Policy - Room for improvement? Hearing om framtiden för EU:s fiskeripolitik."— Presentation transcript:

1 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries The Common Fisheries Policy - Room for improvement? Hearing om framtiden för EU:s fiskeripolitik Stockholm 9 April 2008 Poul Degnbol Scientific adviser This presentation relates to preliminary outcomes of an analysis in progress and does not necessarily represent the official opinion of the European Commission

2 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Diagnosis - outcomes

3 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries The CFP has delivered less than hoped for Overfished stocks and low ecological sustainability 80% of stocks overfished (global average is 25%) 30% of assessed stocks outside safe biological limits Low contribution of raw materials from Community fisheries as food

4 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Dramatic reduction in landings over a decade Eurostat data

5 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Regional losses in landings North Sea demersal stocks Iberian demersal stocks ICES data

6 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Losses close to Sweden Western Baltic cod Kattegat cod ICES advice report

7 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Decreasing contribution to EU food supply Imported raw materials Domestic EU production, landings + aquaculture Eurostat data

8 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries The CFP has delivered less than hoped for Overfished stocks and low ecological sustainability Low contribution of raw materials from Community fisheries as food Overcapacity of the fishing fleets and poor economic performance Poor contribution to viability of coastal communities Work on fishing vessels remains as one of the most dangerous professions in Europe Low legitimacy in some important parts of the public and stakeholder opinion.

9 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Diagnosis - causes

10 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Causes Lack of will - Insufficient support for CFP objectives Systems failure - Institutional framework fosters short term focus and lack of will

11 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Causes – lack of will to use present instruments efficiently Council: TACs consistently decided above scientific advice Many TACs set above scientific advice Some TACs set above management plan Member States: Poor implementation as control and enforcement by Member States is insufficient Industry: Unreported landings, political pressure for excessive TACs

12 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Causes – institutional setup fosters short term perspective Relative stability creates focus on short term by Member States The responsibility for long term sustainability is not shared - Division of labour between COM and Member States results in a decision process that does not work The scope for policy decisions is left open as the objectives are not focused and not linked to standards or indicators; Accountability low because measuring stick absent The use of instruments in the policy is complex and detailed - Centralised micro-decision and micromanagement The resources to implement the policy are increasingly insufficient to meet the demands.

13 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Causes – industry incentives wrong way round The instruments of the CFP do not provide the right incentives or may even create incentives for irresponsible fishing. Relative stability Subsidies create overcapacity Lack of long term rights for industry Lack of responsibilities for the industry - promotes a short term perspective in the industry and a focus at Council on the short term national share rather than the long term The burden of proof regarding sustainability is placed with the Commission rather than with the industry. Incentive to withhold information (less data = more fish!) A general paternalistic/irresponsibility atmosphere

14 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Systemic irresponsibility - the negative micromanagement spiral A conservation objective is identified Technical measures to achieve this are put in place The industry experiences losses of catch value or fishing opportunities Industry makes technological adaptations which nullifies negative economic effects of regulation These adaptations nullify conservation effect in the process Conservation outcomes not achieved

15 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Technical micro-regulation “ It is prohibited to carry on board or deploy any beam trawl of mesh size equal to or greater than 80 mm unless the entire upper half of the anterior part of such a net consists of a panel of netting material of which no individual mesh is of mesh size less than 180 mm attached: directly to the headline, or to no more than three rows of netting material of any mesh size attached directly to the headline. The panel of netting shall extend towards the posterior of the net for at least the number of meshes determined by: (i) dividing the length in metres of the beam of the net by 12; (ii) multiplying the result obtained in (i) by and (iii) dividing the result obtained in (ii) by the mesh size in millimetres of the smallest mesh in the panel and (iv) ignoring any decimal or other fractions in the result obtained in (iii).” Council reg 2056/2001 art 5.3

16 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Bacoma regulation 2005

17 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Interesting legal prose is matched by equally interesting technological innovations

18 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Outcomes of the micromanagement spiral Perverted technologies and fishing practices Non-economical technologies and practices Technologies which do not achieve conservation targets Low legitimacy Low compliance Increasingly paternalistic governance - down to repair guides in legal text Widening the fisher-science-manager gap Non-achievement of objectives - ecological, economic, social

19 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries The creation of overcapacity As in all other industries - fishers invest in productivity increase But the resource base does not increase Harvest capacity outgrows the possibilities for sustainable harvest Fish stocks become overfished and fish densities in the sea decrease More effective gear required to catch low fish densities economically Technological creep 3-4% annually With no action 3% increase in efficiency leads to 35% overcapacity in 10 years

20 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Public contributions to overcapacity Subsidies have been given to vessel building, engines, fishing gear….. Subsidies to scrapping may lead to more risk taking in investment and thus to overcapacity Subsidies are still given to engine renewal Indirect subsidies are still given: The industry does not pay for right to harvest a public resource Management costs are covered by taxpayers

21 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Whose fault? Everybody is reacting perfectly rationally to the role assigned to them in the fisheries management system The problem is systemic – everybody is locked into their roles in an iron cage of rationality which has become irrational Rational behaviour within an irrational system leads to overall irrational performance

22 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries New challenges - context Markets for fish products changing - retailers increasingly insisting on products which can be documented to originate from sustainable harvest Need to integrate CFP with other marine governance regimes – Environmental policy (Marine Strategy) and with other sectors (Maritime Policy) Pressure to reduce the cost of running the CFP Demands on what fisheries should deliver are increasing Resources to implement fisheries management in COM and Member States are expected not to increase or even to reduce

23 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Need for reform? We need a CFP one form or other because fish stocks are a shared mobile natural resource which is limited Short term - much can be done by using the existing instruments better Longer term – the institutional drivers for short term focus and irresponsibility must be removed

24 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Questions - way forward??

25 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries How can we make more effective use of the present framework? How to promote responsible policy decisions? Can we more forcefully Insist on long term sustainability as the guiding principle for decisions? Other options? How to promote more effective implementation? Control reform Other options? How to build responsibility? Change towards results based management where society defines maximum allowable impact and industry implements – discards policy, technical measures reform Better communication with stakeholders and citizens Better linkage to market drivers – traceability, ecolabelling Other options?

26 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries A new framework - a future policy which is conducive to responsibility and a long term approach? A clearer policy focus Responsible policy decisions Responsible industry

27 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries A clearer policy focus? Are all objectives equal – ecological sustainability, social and economic? Is ecological sustainability the basis for everything else? Should the CFP take care of all objectives? Or should the CFP only focus on ecological sustainability and leave social and economic objectives to other policies? How do we ensure sufficiently precise descriptions of objectives to enable monitoring and accountability? Standards, indicators? Guidelines for operationalisation?

28 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Responsible decision making and implementation? How do we enhance a longer term focus in decision making – including shared responsibility for long term sustainability? How do we get clear responsibilities and accountability? A clearer hierarchy of decisions and implementation? Should strategic decisions on standards and management plans be taken at a high level while leaving implementation decisions to Commission and Member States? Can more implementation be delegated to MS under Community standards and control ? Can implementation of the CFP be regionalised (with MS responsibility on regional level)? What are the requirements for standards and plans to enable more delegation? What are the requirements for control and audit? How is accountability on all levels ensured? How do we address the micromanagement and resource issues?

29 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Responsible industries? How do we reverse present perverse incentives for irresponsible fishing? Longer term access rights? Long term user rights to increase decision horizon? Do rights need to be tradable to ensure structural adaptation and effective industries? More Responsibility as condition for rights? Will rights in themselves lead to more responsibility? Should rights be linked to responsibilities? More use of results based management leaving implementation details to industry within clear standards for maximum impact? Reversal of burden of proof - should right of access be subject to demonstration of responsible fishing? More financial responsibility? Payment for rights? Cost recovery of management costs? Stronger support of market drivers for responsibility? Traceability Certification

30 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Summary The CFP has delivered less than hoped for The causes are both ‘lack of will’ and ‘systemic failure’, a framework which is conducive to short term focus and irresponsibility Can we do better by: More efficient use of the existing framework? By improving the framework in the future? Clearer policy focus? Framework to promote responsible decision making and implementation? Incentives to promote industry responsibility?

31 European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries


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