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2013/0436(COD) - 28/04/2015 Text adopted by Parliament, 1st reading/single reading

The European Parliament adopted by 573 votes to 96, with 21 abstentions, a legislative resolution on the proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council amending Council Regulations (EC) No 850/98, (EC) No 2187/2005, (EC) No 1967/2006, (EC) No 1098/2007, No 254/2002, (EC) No 2347/2002 and (EC) No 1224/2009 and repealing (EC) No 1434/98 as regards the landing obligation.

It should be recalled that the reform of the common fisheries policy adopted in 2013 saw fundamental changes being made to the rules applicable to fisheries. More specifically, the basic common fisheries policy regulation (Regulation (EC) No 1380/2013) imposes a landing obligation for all catches. That obligation will enter into effect in a stepwise manner over the period 2015 to 2019.

Since this landing obligation conflicts with several EU regulations currently in force, the Commission has brought forward an ‘Omnibus’ regulation which seeks to amend seven regulations in parallel so as to bring them into line with the basic common fisheries policy regulation.

Parliament adopted its position at first reading following the ordinary legislative procedure. The amendments adopted in plenary amended the Commission proposal as follows:

  • in order to ensure monitoring and enforcement of the landing obligation, Council Regulation (EC) No 1224/2009 (10) should be amended by requiring data on catches below the minimum conservation reference size to be recorded separately;
  • given that the landing obligation represents a fundamental change for operators, it is appropriate to postpone for two years the application of the rules on serious infringements as regards infringements of that type;
  • according to the Parliament the development of parallel activities specifically devoted to catching marine organisms that are below the minimum conservation reference size for uses other than human consumption should be prevented;
  • minimum marketing sizes should correspond to the minimum conservation reference sizes for the species in question;
  • the master of each Union fishing vessel of 10 meters length overall or more shall keep a fishing logbook of operations, indicating specifically, for each fishing trip, all quantities of each species caught and kept on board above 50 kg of live-weight equivalent. The 50 kg threshold shall apply as soon as catches of a species exceed 50 kg.

By 31 May 2016, and by 31 May of each subsequent year up to and including 2020, the Commission shall submit an annual report on the implementation of the landing obligation, based on information transmitted by the Member States, the Advisory Councils and other relevant sources to the Commission. Annual reports shall include:

  • steps taken by Member States and producer organisations to comply with the landing obligation;
  • steps taken by Member States regarding control of compliance with the landing obligation;
  • information on the socio-economic impact of the landing obligation;
  • information on the effect of the landing obligation on safety on board fishing vessels;
  • information on the use and outlets of catches below the minimum conservation reference size of a species subject to the landing obligation;
  • information on port infrastructures and of vessels’ fitting with regard to the landing obligation;
  • for each fishery concerned, information on the difficulties encountered in the implementation of the landing obligation and recommendations to address them.