Procedure : 2018/0239(NLE)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected : A8-0016/2019

Texts tabled :

A8-0016/2019

Debates :

Votes :

PV 12/02/2019 - 9.5

Texts adopted :

P8_TA(2019)0066

RECOMMENDATION     ***
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11.1.2019
PE 629.402v02-00 A8-0016/2019

on the draft Council decision on the conclusion, on behalf of the European Union, of the Agreement to Prevent Unregulated High Seas Fisheries in the Central Arctic Ocean

(10784/2018 – C8‑0431/2018 – 2018/0239(NLE))

Committee on Fisheries

Rapporteur: Norica Nicolai

DRAFT EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT LEGISLATIVE RESOLUTION
 EXPLANATORY STATEMENT
 PROCEDURE – COMMITTEE RESPONSIBLE
 FINAL VOTE BY ROLL CALL IN COMMITTEE RESPONSIBLE

DRAFT EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT LEGISLATIVE RESOLUTION

on the draft Council decision on the conclusion, on behalf of the European Union, of the Agreement to Prevent Unregulated High Seas Fisheries in the Central Arctic Ocean

(10784/2018 – C8‑0431/2018– 2018/0239(NLE))

(Consent)

The European Parliament,

–  having regard to the draft Council decision (10784/2018),

  having regard to the draft Agreement to Prevent Unregulated High Seas Fisheries in the Central Arctic Ocean (10788/2018),

–  having regard to the request for consent submitted by the Council in accordance with Articles 43 and Article 218(6), second subparagraph, point (a)(v), of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (C8‑0431/2018),

–  having regard to Rule 99(1) and (4) and Rule 108(7) of its Rules of Procedure,

–  having regard to the recommendation of the Committee on Fisheries (A8-0016/2019),

1.  Gives its consent to conclusion of the agreement;

2.  Instructs its President to forward its position to the Council, the Commission and the governments and parliaments of the Member States and of the other parties to the agreement.


EXPLANATORY STATEMENT

Analysis of the Agreement

The objective of this Agreement is to prevent unregulated fishing (IUU) in the high seas portion of the central Arctic Ocean. The Parties of this Agreement are Canada, the People’s Republic of China, the Kingdom of Denmark in respect of the Faroe Islands and Greenland, Iceland, Japan, the Republic of Korea, the Kingdom of Norway, the Russian Federation, the United States of America and the European Union. The Government of Canada was chosen to be the depository of the Agreement and will perform the functions as provided for in the 1969 Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties.

The Joint Program of Scientific Research and Monitoring which will be established within two years of entry into force of this Agreement, will have as objective to increase the knowledge of living marine resource of the central Arctic Ocean and its ecosystems. The Joint Program will be developed and implemented by the Parties and has to take into consideration the scientific information provided by other bodies and programs, as well as indigenous and local knowledge.

Based on the scientific information derived from the work of the Joint Program of Scientific Research and Monitoring the Parties shall decide upon management measures for exploratory fishing in the Agreement Area and whether they would authorize vessels flying their flag to conduct commercial fishing. The exploratory fishing shall not undermine the objective of the Agreement and shall be limited in duration, scope and scale in order to minimize the impact on the stocks. Any commercial fishing authorization should be based on the management measures derived from the scientific information given by the Joint Program or based on the conservation and management measures adopted by a regional or subregional fishing management organization (RFMO), which would operate in the Agreement Area in accordance to international law and international standards.

The Agreement is open for other states to enter, taken those countries have a real interest to accede to it. Non-parties are invited to take measures that are consistent with the objectives of this Agreement, but it is the right of the Parties to take measures against vessels flying the flag of a non-party country which undermines the effective implementation.

The Agreement shall enter into force 30 days after all Parties have deposited their ratification, acceptance and approval instruments, and for all other countries who would like to adhere the Agreement will enter into force 30 days after they submitted their instruments, taken that the Agreement is already in force for the initial Parties. The Agreement expires after an initial period of 16 years and will be automatically renewed for another 5 years if no party has formulated any objection to an extension.

Any Party can withdraw from this Agreement by sending a notification of its decision to the Government of Canada, the depositary of the Agreement. The notification shall specify the exact date of the withdrawal, which should be at least 6 months after the notification. The withdrawal from this Agreement will not exonerate the country from its international law obligations and will not stop the other Parties to continue to apply the Agreement.

Rapporteur's comments and conclusions

Considering the European Parliament Resolution from 16 March 2017 and the objectives and instruments of this Agreement, it is the rapporteurs’ opinion that the European Commission has taken into consideration most of the opinions expressed in that Resolution.

It is important to underline that this Agreement has a twofold objective, one being that of further exploring and better understanding of the biodiversity and ecosystem of the Central Arctic Ocean and the second one of fighting and preventing IUU in that area. These two objectives were of utmost importance for the European Parliament, together with a moratorium on commercial fishing in that area.

Considering the melting of the ice cap and the ever growing areas available for exploration in the Arctic Ocean, signing this Agreement, which provides some safety measures and include the precautionary approach at all stages, will postpone and prevent any unilateral commercial fishing licensing. It is important to notice that the financial value of the fish stocks found in the Central Arctic Ocean might be a very big temptation for many countries and thus, the rapporteur, stresses that this is not a complete ban of commercial fishing in the area but it is a step forward towards a sustainable, scientific based approach instead of an out of hand, profit-driven, competition between countries.

Also, it is important to stress that the Agreement is in line with the CFP and with the objectives of the EU. Being part of this Agreement will help the EU promote and protect its environmental objectives and will give access to the scientific information, to the management measures and to all future instruments put in place for that Area. It is the rapporteurs’ opinion that the EU, through the voice of the Commission but also through the work of its Member States, should work towards developing, coordinating and implementing an RFMO.


PROCEDURE – COMMITTEE RESPONSIBLE

Title

Proposal for a Council decision on the conclusion, on behalf of the European Union, of the Agreement to prevent unregulated high seas fisheries in the Central Arctic Ocean

References

10784/2018 – C8-0431/2018 – COM(2018)04532018/0239(NLE)

Date of consultation / request for consent

5.10.2018

 

 

 

Committee responsible

       Date announced in plenary

PECH

22.10.2018

 

 

 

Committees asked for opinions

       Date announced in plenary

ENVI

22.10.2018

 

 

 

Not delivering opinions

       Date of decision

ENVI

10.7.2018

 

 

 

Rapporteurs

       Date appointed

Norica Nicolai

7.9.2018

 

 

 

Discussed in committee

8.10.2018

27.11.2018

 

 

Date adopted

10.1.2019

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

22

1

0

Members present for the final vote

Marco Affronte, Clara Eugenia Aguilera García, Renata Briano, David Coburn, Diane Dodds, Linnéa Engström, Sylvie Goddyn, Carlos Iturgaiz, Werner Kuhn, António Marinho e Pinto, Gabriel Mato, Norica Nicolai, Annie Schreijer-Pierik, Ricardo Serrão Santos, Isabelle Thomas, Peter van Dalen, Jarosław Wałęsa

Substitutes present for the final vote

José Blanco López, Ole Christensen, Norbert Erdős, Jens Gieseke, Czesław Hoc, Nosheena Mobarik

Substitutes under Rule 200(2) present for the final vote

Tilly Metz

Date tabled

16.1.2019


FINAL VOTE BY ROLL CALL IN COMMITTEE RESPONSIBLE

22

+

ALDE

António Marinho e Pinto, Norica Nicolai

ECR

Peter van Dalen, Czesław Hoc, Nosheena Mobarik

EFDD

Sylvie Goddyn

PPE

Norbert Erdős, Jens Gieseke, Carlos Iturgaiz, Werner Kuhn, Gabriel Mato, Annie Schreijer-Pierik, Jarosław Wałęsa

S&D

Clara Eugenia Aguilera García, José Blanco López, Renata Briano, Ole Christensen, Ricardo Serrão Santos, Isabelle Thomas

VERTS/ALE

Marco Affronte, Linnéa Engström, Tilly Metz

1

-

EFDD

David Coburn

0

0

 

 

Key to symbols:

+  :  in favour

-  :  against

0  :  abstention

Last updated: 31 January 2019Legal notice