Procedure : 2006/0190(CNS)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected : A6-0085/2007

Texts tabled :

A6-0085/2007

Debates :

Votes :

PV 26/04/2007 - 8.7
Explanations of votes

Texts adopted :

P6_TA(2007)0163

REPORT     *
PDF 156kWORD 99k
28 March 2007
PE 384.479v02-00 A6-0085/2007

on the proposal for a Council regulation amending Regulation (EC) No 2371/2002 on the conservation and sustainable exploitation of fisheries resources under the Common Fisheries Policy

(COM(2006)0587 – C6-0402/2006 – 2006/0190(CNS))

Committee on Fisheries

Rapporteur: Ioannis Gklavakis

DRAFT EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT LEGISLATIVE RESOLUTION
 EXPLANATORY STATEMENT
 PROCEDURE

DRAFT EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT LEGISLATIVE RESOLUTION

on the proposal for a Council regulation amending Regulation (EC) No 2371/2002 on the conservation and sustainable exploitation of fisheries resources under the Common Fisheries Policy

(COM(2006)0587 – C6-0402/2006 – 2006/0190(CNS))

(Consultation procedure)

The European Parliament,

–   having regard to the Commission proposal to the Council (COM(2006)0587)(1),

–   having regard to Article 37 of the EC Treaty, pursuant to which the Council consulted Parliament (C6-0402/2006),

–   having regard to Rule 51 of its Rules of Procedure,

–   having regard to the report of the Committee on Fisheries (A6-0085/2007),

1.  Approves the Commission proposal as amended;

2.  Calls on the Commission to alter its proposal accordingly, pursuant to Article 250(2) of the EC Treaty;

3.  Calls on the Council to notify Parliament if it intends to depart from the text approved by Parliament;

4.  Asks the Council to consult Parliament again if it intends to amend the Commission proposal substantially;

5.  Instructs its President to forward its position to the Council and Commission.

Text proposed by the Commission  Amendments by Parliament

Amendment 1

ARTICLE 1, POINT 1
Article 11, paragraph 6, indents 1 and 2 (Regulation (EC) No 2371/2002)

- 4 % of the average annual tonnage withdrawn with public aid between 1 January 2003 and 31 December 2006 for the Member States that were part of the Community on 1 January 2003 and 4 % of the annual average tonnage withdrawn with public aid between 1 May 2004 and 31 December 2006 for the Member States that acceded to the Community on 1 May 2004 and,

- 10 % of the average annual tonnage withdrawn with public aid between 1 January 2003 and 31 December 2006 for the Member States that were part of the Community on 1 January 2003 and 10 % of the annual average tonnage withdrawn with public aid between 1 May 2004 and 31 December 2006 for the Member States that acceded to the Community on 1 May 2004 and,

- 4 % of the tonnage withdrawn from the fleet with public aid as from 1 January 2007

- 10 % of the tonnage withdrawn from the fleet with public aid as from 1 January 2007

Justification

The proposed reallocation of 4% of the tonnage withdrawn with public aid is too low in relation to the whole of the coastal fishing fleet and is not sufficient to improve safety, hygiene, working conditions and product quality on board.

Amendment 2

ARTICLE 1, POINT 2
Article 13, paragraph 1, point (c), subparagraphs 1 a and 1 b (new) (Regulation (EC) No 2371/2002)

 

Nevertheless, this reduction in power must not under any circumstances diminish the vessel's safeness , habitability or the efficiency of fish-processing systems.

 

Furthermore, given that the objective of the reduction is to avoid any increase in the vessel's fishing capacity, the provisions of the first subparagraph shall not be taken into account where the engine is replaced in order to conserve energy and/or improve the vessel's performance in areas other than fishing capacity, or where more selective fishing methods, as regards the use of the vessel, have been opted for.

(1)

Not yet published in OJ.


EXPLANATORY STATEMENT

Commission proposal

In June 2006, after the political agreement reached in the Council on the new European Fisheries Fund, a decision was taken to amend two provisions of the basic regulation on the revised common fisheries policy (2371/2002) applying to the management of fishing fleet capacity. The amendment is aimed at permitting some adaptations of the fleet to improve safety, working conditions and hygiene, product quality on board and energy efficiency.

More specifically, it is proposed to amend two articles in Chapter III of Regulation (EC) No 2371/2002: Article 11 on the adjustment of fishing capacity and Article 13 on the entry-exit scheme and overall capacity reduction.

(a) The new Article 11 provides for the possibility to use 4% of the tonnage withdrawn or the tonnage to be withdrawn with public aid in order to carry out work to modernise fishing vessels in the context of safety and hygiene requirements and improve working conditions on board vessels;

(b) The new Article 13, in keeping with the existing policy on fishing capacity reduction, adds a provision to the effect that the reduction in power linked to the replacement of the engine with public aid cannot be rebuilt.

Rapporteur’s comments

The rapporteur welcomes the Commission proposal to amend the basic regulation on the common fisheries policy as regards the management of fleet capacity. The amendment will give the Member States the possibility for a limited increase in the capacity of their fleet for the purpose of improving safety, working conditions, hygiene and product quality on board, as well as energy efficiency.

As regards the amendment to Article 11, the rapporteur takes the view that the possibilities for using 4% of the tonnage withdrawn or the tonnage to be withdrawn with public aid are clear and positive, the aim being to carry out work to modernise fishing vessels for reasons of safety and hygiene.

The rapporteur agrees that, when allocating this percentage, priority should be given to small-scale coastal fishing vessels, i.e. vessels with an overall length of less than 12 metres, since this sector has been badly affected by the change in fishing conditions and its viability is uncertain.

The rapporteur nevertheless takes the view that the possibility of reallocating 4% of the tonnage withdrawn with public aid will not provide any real assistance for the sector concerned, since it represents more than 80% of the fishing fleet. In this light, 4% is a very small percentage which will have to be shared among a very large number of vessels.

According to the Community register of fishing vessels, around 132 000 GT were withdrawn with public aid in 2003, 2004 and 2005. Of this total, 112 000 GT were withdrawn by the old Member States (6.27%), with a further 20 000 GT being withdrawn since May 2004 by the new Member States (18.48%). 4% of this is an extremely small amount, bearing in mind that it will have to be distributed among the Member States' fishing fleets. For Member States which have given priority to the modernisation of the coastal fishing fleet, this possibility is negligible. It should be pointed out that the reduction in tonnage has been achieved largely thanks to schemes geared to the permanent cessation of fishing activities.

The rapporteur takes the view that, given that the actual amendment does not increase the vessels’ capacity, a slight increase in the proposed percentage – 10% of the total tonnage scrapped with public aid – could improve working and hygiene conditions on board. Still more importantly, this would improve the competitiveness of the coastal fleet, which has a significant socio-economic impact on the communities concerned.

Your rapporteur’s proposal does not pose any administrative or financial burden but tallies with the spirit of the political agreement. In other words, the application of the new rules on fleet management is guaranteed with existing human and budgetary resources.

As regards the amendment to Article 13(1)(c), a new provision is being introduced according to which the reduction in power following the replacement of an engine with public aid may not be restored. The new provision has been added to make the new regulation compatible with the objective of fleet capacity reduction laid down in the European Fisheries Fund.

Specifically, reference is made to Article 25(3) of Regulation (EC) No 1198/2006, which offers the possibility of changing the engines of fishing vessels with financial support varying according to the type of vessel: where vessels belong to the small-scale coastal fleet, i.e. if they are no more than 12 metres in length, the new engine must have the same power as the old one, whilst for larger vessels the new engine must have at least 20% less power.

The rapporteur is satisfied at the fact that stakeholders will be able to replace their vessel's engine with public aid. He nevertheless takes the view that linking aid for replacing the engines of vessels with a length of over 12 metres to the compulsory 20% reduction in power may have repercussions on the safety of vessels and crews. Moreover, some fishing methods are thereby rendered virtually impossible, and this will have social and economic consequences.

The rapporteur notes that the common fisheries policy has introduced measures likely to reduce excess fishing capacity. This is demonstrated by the Community fishing fleet register. In 2003, 2004 and 2005, 427 000 kW were withdrawn with public aid. The vast majority of the fishing capacity withdrawn – 373 000 kW – came from the Member States of the EU-15. The fishing capacity withdrawn by the new Member States with public aid since 2 May 2004 stood at 54 000 kW.

The rapporteur agrees with the Commission that fishing fleet capacity remains at a high level by comparison with fish stocks. He nevertheless insists that fishing capacity should not be reduced to the detriment of the safety of vessels and crews. Community aid must be adapted to the changing needs in the fishing industry and thereby guarantee both the sustainable exploitation of fish stocks and the long-term preservation of fishing activities.

Conclusion

The rapporteur welcomes the Commission’s intention to provide possibilities – however limited – for modernising fishing vessels in the context of requirements relating to safety, hygiene and the improvement of working conditions on board. He nevertheless takes the view that the percentage should be revised in order to offer the coastal fishing fleet real possibilities for modernisation. With regard to the amendment to Article 13, he rejects the compulsory 20% reduction in power for vessels over 12 metres in length since this would jeopardise the safety of vessels and crews, whilst rendering certain fishing methods virtually impossible, which would have economic and social consequences for the industry.


PROCEDURE

Title

Conservation and sustainable exploitation of fisheries resources

References

COM(2006)0587 - C6-0402/2006 - 2006/0190(CNS)

Date of consulting Parliament

9.11.2006

Committee responsible

       Date announced in plenary

PECH

29.11.2006

Committee(s) asked for opinion(s)

       Date announced in plenary

ENVI

29.11.2006

 

 

 

Not delivering opinions

       Date of decision

ENVI

28.11.2006

 

 

 

Rapporteur(s)

       Date appointed

Ioannis Gklavakis

13.12.2006

 

 

Discussed in committee

25.1.2007

27.2.2007

 

 

Date adopted

22.3.2007

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

25

1

0

Members present for the final vote

Alfonso Andria, Stavros Arnaoutakis, Elspeth Attwooll, Marie-Hélène Aubert, Iles Braghetto, Luis Manuel Capoulas Santos, Paulo Casaca, Zdzisław Kazimierz Chmielewski, Emanuel Jardim Fernandes, Carmen Fraga Estévez, Duarte Freitas, Ioannis Gklavakis, Pedro Guerreiro, Ian Hudghton, Heinz Kindermann, Rosa Miguélez Ramos, Marianne Mikko, Philippe Morillon, Seán Ó Neachtain, Willi Piecyk, Struan Stevenson, Catherine Stihler, Daniel Varela Suanzes-Carpegna

Substitute(s) present for the final vote

Vincenzo Aita, Ole Christensen, Jan Mulder, Thomas Wise

Last updated: 12 April 2007Legal notice