CIM-VenetoThe CPMR Intermediterranean Commission (IMC) is set to launch a new Task Force that will promote the competitiveness and sustainability of the Mediterranean fisheries and aquaculture sector.

The Task Force, which was approved at the Commission’s General Assembly in June, will aim to help the sector cope with the challenges it currently faces including environmental issues, economic difficulties, and social conditions.

Fisheries and aquaculture play a strategic socio-economic role in Europe by ensuring employment, development and growth at territorial level. For instance, in 2013 the EU fishing fleet generated €6.86 billion in revenue. Aquaculture* covers over 20% of the total EU fish production, producing around 1.2 million tonnes and €4 billion in value.

However, despite this generally positive overview, the EU fisheries and aquaculture sectors are at a crossroads. The Mediterranean fisheries and aquaculture sectors appear to be particularly vulnerable to finding sustainable solutions to issues such as overfishing, impacts of pollution and climate change on fish stocks, and low levels of financial viability of fishing enterprises.

The Task Force, which was set up set up as part of the IMC Working Group on ‘Transport & Integrated Maritime Policy’, will develop its work around the following areas:

  • Monitoring the implementation of the CFP
  • Boosting financial support to the fisheries and aquaculture sector
  • Promoting fisheries and aquaculture in Mediterranean emerging strategies & initiatives (EUSAIR and Western Med on top)
  • Designing & implementing transnational and crossborder projects
  • Fostering education and training in the fisheries and aquaculture sector

During the CPMR General Assembly in the Azores, on November 3, the plenary of the CPMR/IMC Geographical Commission will vote for the president of the task force, as well as approving its work programme. This will officially start its operation.

For more information about the CPMR/IMC task force on fisheries and aquaculture please contact:

*Sources: The 2016 Annual Economic Report on the EU fishing Fleet, Scientific, Technical and Economic Committee (STECF) and The Economic Performance of the EU Aquaculture Sector (STECF 14-18).