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.

Special conditions, flexibilities and footnotes

a) The Delegations agreed the special conditions, flexibilities and footnotes applicable to each stock, set out in Annex 1.

b) Acknowledging previous commitments by the Parties for stocks listed in Annex 1 where geographic flexibility is provided for, the Parties are committed to ensuring appropriate safeguards are in place that ensure its application meets clear management objectives - such as managing choke - and does not result in a detrimental alteration in fishing effort or in depleted bycatch stocks, including no undesired increase in fishing mortality or impediment to the recovery of the bycatch stocks. In particular:

i. The Parties will, where appropriate, implement robust monitoring or reporting arrangements for Annex 1 stocks where geographic flexibilities are provided for and report back via the SCF, and will work via the SCF to consider more broadly the use of geographic flexibility for Annex 1 stocks.

ii. The Delegations agreed that because geographic flexibility could result in effort displacement between areas., safeguard measures are required in order to protect depleted stocks such as cod and whiting in the West of Scotland. The Delegations agreed that safeguards should be established that would limit the amount of quota that can be transferred in situations where the donor TAC is substantially larger than recipient TAC, including the suspension of such flexibilities.

c) The Delegations agreed to a process of a review, via the SCF, of footnotes with inter-species, inter-stock and intra-stock flexibilities in Annex 1 with a view to consensual revision where considered necessary, to avoid significant risks to sustainability. Further to paragraph 1 h) (Deep-sea stocks), this would include a review of the provisions for deep sea stocks, recognising the vulnerable nature of these species. Future footnotes should also be considered where appropriate.

d) Without prejudice to the review process set out above, the Delegations agreed to suspend the interspecies flexibilities for Western horse mackerel for 2023, since this stock received zero-catch advice from ICES and is by-catch only in 2023.

e) The Delegations agreed that the herring (3a) flexibility into United Kingdom waters of Area 4, which is included in Table 4 of Annex 1, is granted for 2023 without prejudice to any future arrangements.

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