Call for sanctions against Faroe and Iceland after mackerel talks break down yet again

The EU should impose sanctions against Faroe and Iceland, according to Scottish fishing leaders.

The call came after three days of talks in Oslo to try to reach an agreement on joint managements of the north-east Atlantic mackerel stock ended in deadlock.

Unrealistic demands and irresponsible behaviour of Iceland and Faroe were said to be behind the collapse in negotiations.

Talks have been ongoing since last year with the Faroe Islands and Iceland with the aim of concluding a comprehensive sustainable mackerel management agreement.

Iceland has already set its own mackerel quota for 2011 of more than 150,000 tonnes which, according to the Scottish Pelagic Fishermen’s Association, is not backed by scientific advice.

The Faroese have still to set their unilateral mackerel quota for 2011, but last year they allocated 85,000 tonnes of mackerel quota to their vessel owners.

Ian Gatt, chief executive of the SPFA, said: “We are bitterly disappointed that the totally unrealistic and intransigent stance taken by Iceland the Faroes during these latest talks has meant that it was not possible to reach an agreement.

“The EU and Norway offered genuine and meaningful concessions in a bid to find a resolution, but these were rejected.

“The move by both countries to significantly increase their already grossly over-inflated quotas is the height of irresponsibility and could do real damage to a stock that has been sustainably harvested and carefully looked after by the Scottish fleet.

“It is now more essential than ever that the EU imposes meaningful sanctions against Iceland and the Faroes, including putting accession talks with Iceland to join the EU on hold.

“The EU must stand up for the rights of those member states already in the union and ensure the stocks we rely on and our businesses are protected from countries on the outside. Given this is probably the EU’s most valuable fish stock it’s only right and proper that resolution of the dispute is a pre-condition for accepting Iceland into the body of the EU.”


Add Your Comment

Add Your Comment

Please note, it is the policy of The Shetland Times to publish comments and letters from named individuals only. Both forename and surname are required.

Comments are moderated. Contributors must observe normal standards of decency and tolerance for the opinions of others.

The views expressed are those of contributors and not of The Shetland Times.

The Shetland Times reserves the right to decline or remove any contribution without notice or stating reason.

Comments are limited to 200 words but please email longer articles or letters to for consideration and include a daytime telephone number and your address. If emailing information in confidence please put "Not for publication" in both the subject line and at the top of the main message.

200 words left

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


Get Latest News in Your Inbox

Join the The Shetland Times mailing list to get one daily email update at midday on what's happening in Shetland.