The EPP Group denounces that European Commission initiatives such as the Nature Restoration Law and the Action Plan to Protect Marine Biodiversity are incompatible with the reality that the fisheries sector is facing today and the need for food security in Europe.
Ahead of today’s plenary debate with Fisheries Commissioner Virginijus Sinkevičius, Gabriel Mato MEP, EPP Group Spokesman in the European Parliament's Fisheries Committee, pointed out that “focusing on the protection of the environment only, while ignoring socio-economic considerations and food security objectives is contrary to the Common Fisheries Policy, the EU Treaties and common sense. Let’s not forget that oceans are vulnerable but fishermen are as well.”
Mato calls on the Commission to conduct a full socio-economic impact of the measures and criticises that the Commission is imposing disproportionate drastic bans instead of refined tailor-made measures based on the best available scientific advice.
“The Commission’s intentions to impose measures through the back door instead of going through co-decision, undermines the inter-institutional balance and each Institution’s role in the decision-making process”, he stressed.
Mato also supported the fishermen’s protests that took place against the Commission initiatives on 9 May, Europe Day. “The sector feels betrayed and discriminated against; a sector that, despite the unprecedented successive crises, such as COVID and war, continues to provide high quality healthy food to EU consumers”, declared Mato.
Note to editors
The EPP Group is the largest political group in the European Parliament with 176 Members from all EU Member States