What is new from the Agriculture and Fisheries Council meeting on July 15

One of the top issues in the Council of Agriculture and Fisheries meeting on 15th July 2013 was setting the criteria to allocate funds for the EMFF European Maritime and Fisheries Fund.

The Council promoted a new criteria system that will support compliance with the reformed Common Fisheries Policy and in particular with the objective of increased sustainability. EMFF will be used to co-finance projects alongside national funding streams. The European Commission has welcomed the general approach agreed on July 15, 2013, by the Council on the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF) running from 2014-2020.

What is different?
The present EFF (European Fisheries Fund) runs under criteria for allocating funds that are targeted to regional development. This is translated to privilege Member States with lower GDP (Gross Domestic Product) as it is based to a cohesion approach.

The new EMFF will be oriented to a sectorial approach. This will be based on a criteria system that will include employment and production in the fisheries and aquaculture sectors, as well as the share of small scale coastal fishing in the fishing fleet.
These new criteria will promote a level playing field among fishermen from all Member States and ensure proportional shares of the EMFF are attributed to both the fisheries and aquaculture sectors of each Member State.

Each Member States will be allocated a share of the total budget, before drawing up an operational programme, specifying how it intends to spend the money allocated. Once the Commission approves this programme, it is up to the national authorities to decide which projects will be funded. The national authorities and the Commission will be jointly responsible for the implementation of the programmes.

What are the expected benefits?
The new criteria system is expected to raise marine knowledge. It is estimated to strengthen the investment in intensifying and improving data collection, to the tune of an extra 50% compared to the figure for 2007-13, in order to create a wider knowledge base and allow European policy makers to make decisions on the basis of robust evidence.

Also new-Significant raise in funds for control!
The EMFF will also increase its investment into control programmes to 482m EUR which is again over a 50% increase compared to the previous fund.

(Article’s Source)