EU proposals for reform of the Common Fisheries Policy

19 July 2011

The Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee will undertake an inquiry into the European Commission’s proposals to reform the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP), which were published on 13 July 2011. The European Commission envisages a radical reform of the CFP to secure fish stocks and fishermen’s livelihoods for the future while putting an end to overfishing. The package of measures will be debated by the European Parliament and the Council with a view to agreeing them by the end of 2012.

The Committee will examine whether the proposed regulations will deliver long-term environmental and economic sustainability for Europe’s fisheries, its marine ecosystem and for coastal communities through implementing science-led ecosystem based management.

The Committee is seeking evidence from interested parties and invites submissions on the following areas in particular:

  • Has the Commission set the right general objectives for the future CFP? What additional tools are needed to deliver the CFP’s objectives, for example measures to restrict fishing in certain areas such as spawning grounds?
  • Is a landing obligation the most appropriate way to address the problem of discards?
  • What implications do the proposals have for the social and economic viability of UK fishers and coastal communities?
  • What measures should be used to manage over-capacity in the fishing fleet? Does the proposed system of transferable fishing concessions contain sufficient safeguards?
  • Will the Commission’s proposals to decentralise decision-making improve the governance of the EU’s fisheries?
  • Do the proposals set the right framework for implementing an ecosystem based approach, including improving the availability of scientific data?
  • What actions could the UK Government take to encourage ambitious reform of the CFP?

Interested parties are invited to address these specific points, and to provide general views on the CFP package, in writing by Monday 29 August 2011.

Notes for those submitting written evidence to the EFRA inquiry:

Submissions should be in Word or rich text format and sent by e-mail to

The body of the e-mail must include a contact name, telephone number and postal address. The e-mail should also make clear who the submission is from.

Submissions must address the terms of reference. They should be as brief as possible, and no more than 1,000 words. Paragraphs should be numbered for ease of reference, and the document must include an executive summary (no more than one page long).

Committees make public much of the evidence they receive during inquiries. If you do not wish your submission to be published, you must clearly say so. If you wish to include private or confidential information in your submission to the Committee, please contact the Clerk of the Committee to discuss this. Please bear in mind that Committees are not able to investigate individual cases.

Personal information, such as address and contact details, should be provided separately from the body of your submission. You should be aware that there may be circumstances in which the House of Commons will be required to communicate information to third parties on request, in order to comply with its obligations under the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

Submissions should be original work, not previously published or circulated elsewhere. Once submitted, no public use should be made of the submission unless you have first obtained permission from the Committee. For further details about this inquiry, please contact Rebecca Ross, Agriculture Specialist, on 020 7219 2735.


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