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Northeast Atlantic Rockall haddock fisheries
Fishery  Fact Sheet
Management report 2021
Northeast Atlantic Rockall haddock fisheries
Fact Sheet Citation  
Demersal trawlers fishing for Rockall haddock
Owned byNorth-East Atlantic Fisheries Commission (NEAFC) – more>>

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Overview: Rockall haddock is fished by demersal EU trawlers inside and outside EU Waters and by Russian trawlers in the NEAFC Regulatory Area. Consultations on conservation and management are held bilaterally between the EU and the Russian Federation, and within NEAFC. Scientific advice is provided by ICES. NEAFC is not involved in any scientific work. The NEAFC Contracting Parties have stressed that they consider it important to maintain a “clear separation between the scientific role of ICES and the policy and management role of NEAFC” (see report of the 2015 Extraordinary Meeting of NEAFC http://www.neafc.org/system/files/EM-2015-Report-final.pdf). This NEAFC fact sheet will therefore not comment on scientific work or scientific assessments. The ICES advice on which the 2021 NEAFC conservation and management measures will be based can be found on the ICES website (http://ices.dk/sites/pub/Publication%20Reports/Advice/2020/2020/had.27.6b.pdf). Consultations between the fishing parties have not resulted in agreement on comprehensive management measures. However, the parties have unilaterally limited the fishing opportunities of their fishing fleets, and it has been agreed to limit the fisheries in the high seas by NEAFC prohibiting all fishing, except with long-lines, in a specified area.

Location of Northeast Atlantic Rockall haddock fisheries
 

Geographic reference:  Northeast Atlantic
Spatial Scale: Regional
Reference year: 2021
Approach: Fishery Management Unit

Jurisdictional framework
Management Body/Authority(ies): North-East Atlantic Fisheries Commission (NEAFC)
Mandate: Management; Monitoring;
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Area of Competence: NEAFC Convention Area
Maritime Area: High seas

Harvested Resource
Target Species: Haddock
Fishery Area: Rockall; Rockall (Division 27.6.b)

Harvested Resource
Type of production system: Industrial   

Fishery Area
Climatic zone: Temperate.   Vertical distribution: Demersal/Benthic.  

Geo References for: Rockall
Fishing Gear
Trawls
Fleet segment
Vessel Type
Trawlers
Flag State
European Union
Russian Federation
United Kingdom

Rockall haddock is fished by demersal EU trawlers inside and outside EU Waters and by Russian trawlers in the NEAFC Regulatory Area.
Seasonality
Throughout the year.
Ecosystem Assessment
 
ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT OF FISHERIES

NEAFC’s request to ICES for scientific advice reads in part as follows:

“The recurring advice shall include information on the state of marine ecosystems and human impacts including historical developments in main parameters and information on the present state and recent development of stocks. The recurrent advice shall provide information on state of stocks and fisheries including - when available - historical developments in spawning stock biomass, total stock biomass, fishing mortality as well as landings and discards in the NEAFC regulatory area and within EEZs.”

“When providing its advice regarding fisheries ICES shall take account of all available information and the context of fisheries management including information from the fishing industry, ecosystem considerations, environment and hydrographical conditions, regulations in force that affect fisheries, factors affecting fishing operations and information about the fisheries, development of fisheries technology and relevant performance changes and other relevant factors that affect fishing or fish stocks.”

“If no management plan/strategy has been agreed by all relevant management parties or the agreed plan/strategy has been evaluated by ICES not to be consistent with the precautionary approach, ICES will provide advice applying the ICES MSY advice rule if possible or the precautionary approach if the information on the stocks is insufficient to support the MSY rule.”

“The advice shall be based on an ecosystem approach. This will be implemented incrementally so that any information on the interactions between fisheries, the fish stocks and the marine ecosystem is considered and incorporated in the advice as it becomes available; specifically, taking ecosystem and environmental considerations into account when providing the recurring advice mentioned above, ICES will:

Assess the extent to which fishing disturbs the marine ecosystems and, where reference levels have been established, compare the impact to the reference level chosen.

Provide any new information regarding the impact of fisheries on other components of the ecosystem including small cetaceans and other marine mammals, sea birds and sensitive habitats.

Inform NEAFC of any notable impact of other factors on and imbalances in ecosystem structure that may prejudice the stocks of commercially valuable species and its long term exploitation.

Propose reference points as guidance for management purposes in an ecosystem context.

ICES will in addition give warnings of any serious threats from fishing activities alone or in conjunction with any other relevant activity to local ecosystems or species as soon as ICES is aware of such threats.”

The full request for advice will be available on the NEAFC website from February 2021 (https://www.neafc.org/system/files/AM_2020-94_Request-to-ICES-for-advice-2021%28PECMAS_2020-02-10-Rev1%29.pdf).

Bottom fisheries in the NEAFC Regulatory Area (i.e. the high seas of the North East Atlantic) are limited by the legally binding measures for the protection of vulnerable marine ecosystems (VMEs). These measures (https://www.neafc.org/system/files/Recommendation-10-Amending-Rec-19-2014-VME-protection%28reduced%29.pdf) limit bottom fishing to areas where bottom fisheries took place in a specific reference period, and which have not been closed due to VMEs occurring or being likely to occur. This limits the areas where bottom fishing is authorised to a small proportion of the NEAFC Regulatory Area. Areas where VMEs occur or are likely to occur are closed to bottom fishing, but as a precautionary measure encounters with VME indicator species above a specific threshold result in a temporary bottom fishing closure for all vessels. Outside the areas where bottom fisheries took place in a specific reference period, only strictly regulated exploratory bottom fishing can be authorised. These need to undergo an environmental impact assessment and be explicitly agreed to by NEAFC before being authorised, and in practice no such exploratory bottom fishing has taken place.
Management
Management unit: Yes

The fishery is regulated under NEAFC jurisdictional framework / management regime.
Jurisdictional framework
Management Body/Authority(ies): North-East Atlantic Fisheries Commission (NEAFC)
Mandate: Management; Monitoring; Control and surveillance.  
Area of Competence: NEAFC Convention Area
Maritime Area: High seas.  
NEAFC Convention Area. The NEAFC Regulatory Area is the areas beyond national jurisdiction in the NEAFC Convention Area. Courtesy of NEAFC
Related Fisheries - Management system
This fishery is managed as part of the management system described in Northeast Atlantic NEAFC high seas fisheries.

Fisheries for Rockall haddock are subject to legally binding conservation and management measures adopted by NEAFC, Recommendation 4/2021 (https://www.neafc.org/system/files/Recommendation-04-Rockall-Haddock.pdf).

Consultations between the fishing parties in 2020 did not result in agreement on comprehensive management measures. However, the parties have unilaterally limited the fishing opportunities of their fishing fleets, and it has been agreed to limit the fisheries in the high seas by NEAFC prohibiting all fishing, except with long-lines, in a specified area.

The management takes account of the scientific advice from ICES, which can be found on the ICES website (http://ices.dk/sites/pub/Publication%20Reports/Advice/2020/2020/had.27.6b.pdf).

Bottom fisheries in the NEAFC Regulatory Area (i.e. the high seas of the North East Atlantic) are limited by the legally binding measures for the protection of vulnerable marine ecosystems (VMEs). These measures (https://www.neafc.org/system/files/Recommendation-10-Amending-Rec-19-2014-VME-protection%28reduced%29.pdf) limit bottom fishing to areas where bottom fisheries took place in a specific reference period, and which have not been closed due to VMEs occurring or being likely to occur. This limits the areas where bottom fishing is authorised to a small proportion of the NEAFC Regulatory Area. Areas where VMEs occur or are likely to occur are closed to bottom fishing, but as a precautionary measure encounters with VME indicator species above a specific threshold result in a temporary bottom fishing closure for all vessels. Outside the areas where bottom fisheries took place in a specific reference period, only strictly regulated exploratory bottom fishing can be authorised. These need to undergo an environmental impact assessment and be explicitly agreed to by NEAFC before being authorised, and in practice no such exploratory bottom fishing has taken place.

NEAFC’s Permanent Committee on Monitoring and Compliance reports annually to the NEAFC Commission on compliance by the Contracting Parties with Recommendations adopted by NEAFC. The latest such compliance report, relating to the year 2019, is accessible on the NEAFC website (https://www.neafc.org/compliance).


History
All previous conservation and management measures can be found on the NEAFC website (https://www.neafc.org/managing_fisheries/measures/historic).
Status of Management
Assessment Summary
Scientific advice is provided by ICES. NEAFC is not involved in any scientific work. The NEAFC Contracting Parties have stressed that they consider it important to maintain a “clear separation between the scientific role of ICES and the policy and management role of NEAFC” (see report of the 2015 Extraordinary Meeting of NEAFC http://www.neafc.org/system/files/EM-2015-Report-final.pdf). This NEAFC fact sheet will therefore not comment on scientific work or scientific assessments. The ICES advice on which the 2021 NEAFC conservation and management measures are based can be found on the ICES website: (http://ices.dk/sites/pub/Publication%20Reports/Advice/2020/2020/had.27.6b.pdf).
Resources Assessed
Assessment results provided by ICES: Haddock – Rockall.
Negotiation Process
Consultations on conservation and management are held bilaterally between the EU and the Russian Federation, and within NEAFC.
Management Resolutions
Fisheries for Rockall haddock in 2021 are subject to legally binding conservation and management measures adopted by NEAFC, Recommendation 4/2021 (https://www.neafc.org/system/files/Recommendation-04-Rockall-Haddock.pdf).

Consultations between the fishing parties did not resulted in agreement on comprehensive management measures. However, the parties have unilaterally limited the fishing opportunities of their fishing fleets, and it has been agreed to limit the fisheries in the high seas by NEAFC prohibiting all fishing, except with long-lines, in a specified area.

The management takes account of the scientific advice from ICES, which can be found on the ICES website (http://ices.dk/sites/pub/Publication%20Reports/Advice/2020/2020/had.27.6b.pdf).
Management Problems
Consultations between the fishing parties have not resulted in agreement on comprehensive management measures. However, the parties have unilaterally limited the fishing opportunities of their fishing fleets, and it has been agreed to limit the fisheries in the high seas by NEAFC prohibiting all fishing, except with long-lines, in a specified area.
Management Regime
Management Methods

CONSERVATION AND MANAGEMENT MEASURES - Binding

This fishery is regulated by the fishing parties unilaterally limiting the fishing opportunities of their fishing fleets, and through a legally binding NEAFC prohibition on all fishing, except with long-lines, in a specified area.

COMPLIANCE MEASURES - Binding

The fishery is monitored and controlled according to the NEAFC Scheme of Control and Enforcement (https://www.neafc.org/scheme/contents). This includes inter alia a vessel monitoring system, regular catch reporting, inspections at sea and port state control.
Source of Information
 
Information provided by the NEAFC Secretariat.

Sources referred to in this fact sheet are (in the order they are referred to):
Report of the 2015 Extraordinary Meeting of NEAFC. Click to openhttp://www.neafc.org/system/files/EM-2015-Report-final.pdf
ICES advice on which the latest NEAFC conservation and management measures are based. Click to openhttp://ices.dk/sites/pub/Publication%20Reports/Advice/2020/2020/had.27.6b.pdf
Recommendation 19/2014 (as amended) on the protection of vulnerable marine ecosystems in the NEAFC Regulatory Area. Click to openhttps://www.neafc.org/system/files/Recommendation-10-Amending-Rec-19-2014-VME-protection%28reduced%29.pdf
Recommendation 4/2021 on Conservation and Management Measures for Haddock in the NEAFC Regulatory Area for 2021. Click to openhttps://www.neafc.org/system/files/Recommendation-04-Rockall-Haddock.pdf
NEAFC’s annual compliance report for 2019. Click to openhttps://www.neafc.org/compliance
Historic conservation and management measures adopted by NEAFC. Click to openhttps://www.neafc.org/managing_fisheries/measures/historic
The NEAFC Scheme of Control and Enforcement.  Click to openhttps://www.neafc.org/scheme/contents
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