Currently, 70% of EU fishery products come from outside the European bloc.

Rabat – In an upcoming meeting scheduled for March 20, the European and Moroccan Councils of Ministers will discuss the termination of the current fishing agreement that expires on July 17 of this year.

The new agreement must act on the conservation of fishing resources, Europa Press reported. However, the updated agreement has received criticism from EU members, including Spain.

The controversial plan was discussed at the inaugural meeting of the Food Information and Control Agency (AICA) Advisory Council.

Faced with criticism of the European Commission's proposal, the Spanish Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, Luis Planas, reaffirmed that he will defend the interests of the Spanish fleet in the presentation of the new agreement on Monday of next week.

The Spanish minister stated that it is "necessary" for the European Commission to carry out an exhaustive analysis of the fishing situation with a "strategic approach based on the future of the fishing sector before launching any plan."

Critics of the new agreement claim that there is no balance between fishing and environmental policies. In addition, detractors of the new agreement also maintain that the socioeconomic factors contributed by the fishing industry have not been taken into account.

The new agreement establishes limiting the area in which fishing is allowed, but critics say that the European Commission has not taken into account that there are types of fishing equipment that do not have harmful effects.

Currently, 70% of EU fishery products come from outside the European bloc, recalled Planas, who mentioned that the agreement between Spain and any external body involved in fishing activities such as Morocco is a "priority" for Europe.

The current agreement was launched in 2019 and allows "128 EU vessels from Spain, Portugal, France, Germany, Lithuania, Latvia, Poland, the Netherlands, Ireland, Italy and the United Kingdom to fish in the exclusive economic zone ( EEZ) of Morocco", indicates the official website of the EU.

In the last two years, the budget of the fisheries agreement between Morocco and the EU was set at 110.2 million euros.

Source: MoroccoWorldNews