The Portuguese Minister of Maritime Affairs, Ricardo Serrão Santos, promoted reflection on the Common Fisheries Police in terms of the results already achieved and the goals for the future. This time for reflection took place at an informal meeting of European Union Fisheries Ministers at the CCB (Lisbon) on 15 June, under the Portuguese Presidency of the Council of the European Union.
By the end of 2022, a detailed analysis will have been carried out on this policy, adopted in 2013, in preparation for its review, which is expected to strengthen the social and economic sustainability of coastal communities and recognise the role of fishermen as “guardians of the seas”. The new regulation will also be a decisive instrument for tackling the challenges related to climate change and biodiversity conservation.
Minister Ricardo Serrão Santos pointed out that “Portugal, a country with a long maritime tradition, wants fishing to continue to be one of the main sea-related activities; the Common Fisheries Policy is a tool to ensure that fishing is seen as a worthy profession and recognised as indispensable to food safety, a fact which has become even more evident due to the COVID-19 pandemic”.
Apart from the representatives of the 27 Member States, also participating in this discussion were the European Commissioner for Agriculture, Janusz Wojciechowski, Chair of the European Parliament Committee on Fisheries, Pierre Karleskind, and the European Commission’s Director-General for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, Charlina Vitcheva.
The European Green Deal and the Strategy for a Sustainable Blue Economy in the European Union will be relevant instruments for structuring marine resource management, where the Common Fisheries Policy will continue to play a decisive role.
The European Union also wants better bilateral, regional and multilateral governance of the oceans, through the implementation of UN Sustainable Development Goal 14 – “Preserve Ocean Life”, to ensure that our oceans are healthy, safe and sustainably managed.