The debate on the revision of the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) has heated up because of allegations that Member States are trying to put pressure on the Commission. The expected Commission proposal, which is believed to suggest radical changes, has been repeatedly delayed for the past month.
The Commission was expected to issue its proposal for a revision of the common Fisheries Policy (CFP) on 17 April. The Commission proposal was said to include measures to radically cut the size of fishing fleets, by for example ending the aid given for modernising or building of new fishing boats. In addition, the Commission was likely to propose the setting of fishing quotas on a long term basis, and not annually as the system now works.
The Commission’s proposal for the CFP was postponed first one week and now it seems to have been postponed for another month. The Spanish have been particularly critical to the proposed reforms. There are speculations that the Spanish government, supported by France, Italy, Portugal, Greece and Ireland, has put pressure on the Commission not to issue the proposal as it stands. The Spanish government is also said to have asked the Spanish Commissioners to exercise pressure on Mr Fischler, the Commissioner for Fisheries. Loyola de Palacio, the Commissioner for Energy and Transport, has sent a letter to Mr Fischler, in which she criticises the proposed reform.