Two months ahead of the European elections, the European Parliament voted on Thursday 4 April in favour of the report drafted by MEP Gabriel Mato on the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund post-2020 (EMFF), the financial tool supporting the implementation of the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP).
MEPs agreed they would like to increase the EMFF budget to €7.7 billion EUR.
Members of the European Parliament adopted several amendments to support data collection, including data about recreational fisheries. Despite the amendments intended to grant at least 25% of the Union financial support to data collection have been rejected, the Plenary vote backed the Commission’s proposal of at least 15% of the Union financial support to be allocated to each Member States for data collection.
The reintroduction of subsidies for renewal and modernisation of the European fishing fleets has been strongly criticised by environmental NGOs as those subsidies would contribute, in their views, to fleet overcapacity and overfishing.
The European Council is still working on the proposal and should adopt its own position in the following months. Negotiations with the European Parliament to agree on the final text of the EMFF regulation will start in the second part of 2019.