Victory | June 27, 2023

EU Requires Tracking Systems for All Its Fishing Vessels

The European Commission, the European Parliament, and the Council agreed a new law that requires all European Union (EU) fishing vessels, including 49,000 small-scale vessels, to install and use tracking systems by 2030 at the latest. Tracking systems have numerous benefits for the ocean, including promoting sustainable fisheries by increasing transparency about fishing activities. Simultaneously, they empower fishers by involving them in fisheries management, and they enable rapid emergency response in the case of safety issues at sea. The law also requires more transparency from EU countries, which must now disclose national enforcement actions, including the annual number of infringements detected and sanctions imposed. They must also set up a digital traceability system to provide key information (species and origin) to authorities for all seafood products on the EU market. This law, which follows campaigning by Oceana and our allies, will enhance transparency, optimize fishing efficiency, and help combat illegal fishing.