Sumario: EU Commissioner Borg welcomes UN General Assembly call to ensure protection of vulnerable marine ecosystems (8 December 2006: Brussels)
European Commissioner for Fisheries and Maritime Affairs Joe Borg has welcomed the strong guidance provided by the United Nations' 2006 Sustainable Fisheries Resolution which was adopted yesterday by consensus by the General Assembly.
Mr Borg commented: "The United Nations is calling on all responsible fishing nations to make important changes in the way they regulate these activities. This is a true regime shift. The EU must now commit to an effective response to this call and the Commission will not delay in presenting appropriate proposals to the Council." The resolution addresses the main challenges faced today by fisheries management authorities, in particular the need to strengthen Regional Management Organisations (RFMOs), the fight against illegal, unregulated and unreported fishing, and destructive fishing practices. With regard to the latter, the General Assembly resolution calls for effective action by RFMOs and Flag States to regulate fishing on vulnerable marine ecosystems. These measures reflect to a large extent the proposals made by the EU (see IP/06/1291 and IP/06/1581).
While the Commission had been prepared to support even stronger provisions in certain areas, it is convinced that the resolution still represents a powerful package of measures which should lead to the elimination of destructive fishing impacts on vulnerable habitats, in accordance with the commitments made at the World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg in 2002. The General Assembly will review progress made in 2009.