Chapter News

Agriculture and Fisheries Council, 15-16 December 2020

Main results – Fisheries

2021 fishing opportunities

Ministers agreed the catch limits for over 200 commercial fish stocks in the Atlantic, the North Sea, the Mediterranean and the Black Sea for 2021. More than 100 of these stocks in the Atlantic and North Sea have been co-managed with the UK during the last decades. Given the ongoing EU-UK negotiations on their future relationship, ministers agreed to set provisional quotas for the fish stocks shared with the UK. The provisional quotas are designed to ensure the continuation of sustainable fishing in the concerned areas until consultations with the UK are concluded. A similar approach was agreed for the stocks co-managed with Norway.

The agreements reached during the last two days showcase how we can go beyond set expectations. It was not easy to agree on fish catch limits in the context of Brexit and COVID-19 but I firmly believe that we now have the best possible plan in place. It was challenging to reconcile the many divergent views on front-of-pack nutritional labelling but I am convinced we sent a solid political message supported by the vast majority of member states. And we also received overwhelming support for an EU-wide animal welfare label. Setting and achieving ambitious targets has been our guiding principle throughout the last six months and I think that another concrete example is the Council’s position for a more environmentally friendly common agricultural policy. I am proud of our achievements and I am confident that the incoming Portuguese presidency will follow up on them.

Julia Klöckner, Germany’s Federal Minister of Food and Agriculture and the president of the Council

Compliments of the Council of the EU.