Oceana statement on UK Fisheries Bill

Press Release Date: October 25, 2018

Location: London


Marta Madina | email: mmadina@oceana.org | tel.: Marta Madina

On the release of the UK Fisheries Bill today, Oceana has issued the following statement from Lasse Gustavsson, executive director of Oceana Europe:

“The UK Fisheries Bill comes amid a growing global movement to protect the oceans. But the reality is that 4 out of 10 fish stocks surrounding the UK are still overfished meaning UK fish supplies are at stake as well as the jobs that depend on healthy seas.

All eyes are on the UK to show they can manage fishing better and champion stronger ocean conservation. Oceana calculates that the UK has a chance to bring in an extra £319 million for UK GDP and create 5,100 new jobs if they move to sustainable fishing. Let’s not make the Fisheries Bill a missed opportunity to do that.

Notes to the editor:

Oceana has taken part in the public consultation process of the Fisheries Bill and has advocated for the following to be included:

• A duty to set fishing limits below the maximum sustainable yield exploitation rate (FMSY) with a deadline of 2020. 

• A clear duty to deliver effective control, monitoring and enforcement including sanctioning schemes deterrent enough to ensure the sustainable objectives are met and illegal, unreported fishing is prevented and a culture of full compliance is created.

• Clear duties to commit to the following key sustainability principles including the ecosystem-based approach, best available science and the precautionary principle. 

• A duty to only provide fishing authorisations to foreign vessels that are sustainable where there is a surplus of allowable catch that would cover the proposed fishing opportunities as required under Article 62(2) and (3) of UNCLOS. And vice versa for all UK flagged vessels accessing waters outside the UK.

• A duty to establish Fish Stock Recovery Areas (or no-take zones) to protect Essential Fish Habitats identified as key spawning and nursery grounds of commercially exploited species.


Oceana’s response to UK Fisheries Bill Public Consultation Process

Oceana Report: More Food, More Jobs and More Money from UK Fisheries