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More negotiations on mackerel quotas underway

A crucial round of Coastal State consultations on fishing in the northeast Atlantic began yesterday in London in an attempt to find a solution to the quota sharing dispute
Looks peaceful, but the fish wars continue to plague the Faroe Islands (Photo:

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Efforts continue to bring an end to the fisheries disputes between Iceland, the Faroe Islands and the EU, now in its fifth month.

The European Commission, which in September imposed sanctions on the Faroes as part of a dispute over fishing quotas, said in a statement this week that it was hopeful “all reasonable expectations of the four parties (the EU, Faroe Islands, Iceland and Norway) can now be met, so as to allow them to reach a fair and balanced agreement on the sharing of the mackerel stock”.

The burden of increased shares for Iceland and the Faroe Islands would be shared jointly by the EU and Norway, with EU countries shouldering 68.65 percent and Norway 31.35 percent. The ratios are in accordance with the 2010 EU-Norway mackerel agreement.

“The Coastal State meeting this week in London will be a golden opportunity for all parties to reach an agreement in light of the prevailing positive scientific advice,” said Maria Damanaki, the EU fisheries commissioner. “Such ideal conditions may not be replicated in the future.”

READ MORE:No agreement reached at informal mackerel talks

This week’s meetings follow intensive high-level political discussions held by the European Commission with all the countries involved.