European Union and the United Kingdom - fisheries consultations: written record 2023

Written record of fisheries consultations between the United Kingdom and the European Union for 2023.

Non-quota stocks

a) The Delegations agreed not to apply the tonnages provided for in Article 2(1)(b) of Annex 38 to the TCA in 2023, but will continue to closely monitor non-quota stocks fished by each Party in the waters of the other Party. The Delegations agreed that in the event that either Party reaches 80% of its total before the end of 2023, the Parties will meet and consider next steps.

b) For the purposes of monitoring landings of non-quota species and in line with the Parties’ obligations under Article 507 of the Trade and Cooperation Agreement (data-sharing), the Delegations agreed to continue exchanging landings data (for each Party’s vessels from the EEZ and territorial waters of the other Party, and at a species level) at monthly intervals on or before the 25th day of each calendar month, covering the previous calendar month.

c) The Delegations reiterated the commitment made in paragraph 13(b) of the 2022 Written Record to ensure the robustness of the landings data exchanged and recognised again the importance of data transparency. The Delegations agreed to continue technical discussions at pace in 2023 and committed to providing an update on these matters to the SCF in the first half of 2023. The Delegations agreed that each Party is responsible for ensuring the accuracy of their exchanged landings data and for notifying any identified issues, and the steps it is taking to resolve them, promptly to the other Party, noting that issues may not be resolvable immediately.

d) Landings data for 2021 and provisional landings data for the period from 1 January 2022 to 30 September 2022 is set out in Annex 3, outlining total landings for all non-quota species. The Parties will update the data in 2023 to cover the period 1 January to 31 December 2022 and attach it to the next Written Record or the minutes of the next SCF. The Delegations recognised the importance of data transparency and agreed to discuss this further in the SCF.

e) Seabass:

i. The Delegations discussed measures for seabass, agreed to roll over arrangements in place during 2022, and agreed that the following adjustments would be introduced for 2023 as soon as practicable:

1) The commercial trawl/seine flexibility will be amended from a 760kg cap per two months to a 3.8 tonne cap per year within the 5% bass per trip limit;

2) the commercial hooks and lines limits will be amended from 5.95 to 6.2 tonnes per vessel per year;

3) the commercial fixed gillnet limits will be amended from 1.5 to 1.6 tonnes per vessel per year.

ii. The Delegations agreed that by 1 December 2023 the recreational fishing arrangements will be amended so that the catch-and-release period runs from 1 February to 31 March only.

iii. Each Party will keep the impact of these adjustments on uptake and stock mortality under review in its waters. The Delegations also agreed to consider the development of a multi-year strategy for seabass in parallel within the framework of the SCF, noting that the Parties have already agreed to prioritise first Channel king scallops.

iv. The Delegations agreed to follow up on the joint ICES request to improve the ICES assessment tool for seabass.

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