EU, Norway to cooperate on sustainable fishing in Northeast Arctic

A trawler underway in Norwegian Arctic waters

The government of Norway and the European Union have reached a political understanding in relation to fisheries in the Northeast Arctic, in ICES subareas 1 and 2, the European Commission said recently.

The EC said the area concerned includes the waters around the archipelago of Svalbard and the international waters of the Barents Sea. The understanding ensures sustainable fishing in the Northeast Arctic, while also providing certainty for EU fleets fishing in that area.

The understanding allows EU fleets fishing for cod in the waters around the archipelago of Svalbard to continue fishing in line with their historic fishing rights. Norway and the EU will continue setting catch limits applying to EU vessels fishing in Svalbard waters in their legislation, as is the established practice.

The commission said the understanding furthermore strengthens cooperation on measures in relation to fisheries in the Northeast Arctic, ensuring sustainable fishing.

The fisheries covered are fisheries with catches of cod, redfish, haddock, and Greenland halibut. The EU and Norway will in this case engage in consultations regarding such measures, and the measures will be set in a coordinated manner.

The EU will now engage with Norway to determine the next steps that they will take to implement the actions. The reaching of this agreement also provides the opportunity for Norway and the EU to focus on other issues of common interest in the area of fisheries.

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