Better management and control measures in the Atlantic and Mediterranean 

Press Releases 

MEPs updated the conservation and control measures in the ICCAT area as well as the multiannual management plan for bluefin tuna in the Atlantic and Mediterranean.

The plenary gave its final green light to integrating into EU law the recommendations of the regional fisheries organisation International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tuna (ICCAT) for this area. The House approved the new bill with 568 votes in favour to 44 against and 14 abstentions.

To make EU rules as up to date as possible, MEPs made improvements to the Commission proposal concerning different species, such as tropical tunas, albacore, swordfish, sailfish, blue and white marlin, shortfin mako sharks and sea turtles. As an example, and in order to support the stock assessment process, MEPs ask EU countries to improve data collection on catches of different species, including live and dead discards, and report it annually.

Those countries with a bluefin tuna quota will also need to set up a monitoring, control and inspection plan and, if this quota is allocated to recreational fisheries, they will have to authorise vessels for this catch.

This legislation was already agreed with EU governments and approved by the Committee on Fisheries.

More details in this press release (29.11.2023).


The rapporteur Clara Aguilera (S&D, ES) said: “We have updated the rules as much as possible so that the EU’s fishing fleet will have the same conditions and measures as those applied to third country fishing fleets operating in the area, which is essential for a level playing field. We have included, among others, rules for improving data collection, restrictions and prohibitions for recreational fishing and rules for the transfer of bluefin tuna quotas”.

Next steps

The text will have to be approved by the Council and it will become law after published in the Official Journal of the EU.