Thanks to international efforts, the population of bluefin tuna in the Mediterranean Sea for a few years passed from the category of "heavily trapped" to "fully recovered". The applied measures are planned to be used with respect to other commercial species.
Since December 1, the patrol ship "Aegis-1" (AEGIS I) has been following the fishery in the Adriatic Sea. The project is jointly implemented by the European Agency for Fisheries Control, as well as by the Governments of Greece, Italy and Croatia.
The main purpose of the patrol ship is to monitor and conduct inspections of vessels that produce small pelagic species, bluefin tuna and swordfish.
The European Commission notes that these restrictions are the result of the joint ministerial declaration of Medfish4ever, signed this year in Malta. The document also provides for the expansion of the area of marine reserves to 10% of the total area of the Mediterranean Sea by 2020.
Earlier in Malta, 15 states signed the declaration MedFish4ever. It is aimed at saving Mediterranean fish populations, ensuring environmental protection in the region, as well as economic growth in fisheries and related industries.
The signatures were signed by representatives of eight EU members (Spain, France, Italy, Malta, Slovenia, Croatia, Greece and Cyprus) and seven Mediterranean countries outside the EU (Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Egypt, Turkey, Albania and Montenegro) . Also, the declaration was signed by representatives of international organizations - the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the General Commission for Fisheries in the Mediterranean, FAO (SSRC), the European Parliament and the EU Mediterranean Advisory Council (EU Mediterranean Advisory Council).
The process of preparing the declaration was launched by the European Commissioner for the Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Carmen Vella in February 2016.
According to the information of the European Commission, the signatories undertook obligations:
- by 2020 to ensure the collection of adequate information on all key Mediterranean populations of the EBRD and the evaluation of this information by scientific methods;
- approve multi-year management plans for the number of all key populations;
- to eradicate poaching by 2020 by providing all the countries of the basin with the appropriate legislative base, with the necessary forces and means;
- Provide support for small-scale fisheries and aquaculture by optimizing the financing of local projects (re-equipment of the fleet, etc.).
High efficiency is expected to be achieved through the involvement of fishermen, coastal communities, civil society, industry representatives, amateur anglers, and FAO in the process.
Now in the basin of the Mediterranean Sea, more than 300 thousand people are engaged directly in the field of fishing. At the same time, the fish resources of the region are being reduced: according to the data of the European Commission, about 90% of the estimated reserves are exploited excessively.