General Fisheries Commission for the Mediterranean Adopts Recommendations on By-Catch and Corals

17 May 2011: The 35th session of the General Fisheries Commission for the Mediterranean (GFCM) has decided to set up a task force toward a possible revision of the GFCM agreement, with a view to more effectively implementing the precautionary approach and ecosystem approach to fisheries management, including relevant compliance and enforcement mechanisms.

The session, which took place from 9-14 May 2011, at the headquarters of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO) in Rome, Italy, was attended by delegates from 22 members, as well as observers from non-GFCM member nations and representatives from intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations.

The Commission further adopted recommendations on: the exploitation of red coral in the GFCM area; reducing incidental by-catch of seabirds in fisheries in the GFCM area; the by-catch of sea turtles in fisheries in the GFCM area; and fisheries measures for the conservation of the Mediterranean monk seal (Monachus monachus) in the GFCM area. The need for greater involvement of GFCM in the field of aquaculture, as well as the need to reinforce fisheries governance and scientific cooperation in the Black Sea, also were  addressed. [EU Press Release]