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Ponta Delgada ,  December 05, 2019

Gui Menezes advocates more decentralised management of fishing quotas for the Region

 The Regional Secretary for the Sea, Science and Technology defended in Ponta Delgada the need for "better management of the fishing quotas that are common to Mainland Portugal, the Azores and Madeira."

 According to Gui Menezes, it is important that the Azores have "timely" information on the consumption of some national fish quotas allocated to the Region in order "to better manage its fleet and inform fishers."

 "The Azores have given good examples of quota management that have resulted in more income for our shipowners and fishers," said the government official. In the case of quotas for species such as tuna, "there is room for a more decentralised management of quotas to enhance and optimise their consumption."

 The Regional Secretary spoke to journalists on the sidelines of a meeting with the Minister of the Sea, Ricardo Serrão Santos, to discuss matters pertaining to fisheries. 

 Considering the results of the last meeting of the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT), Gui Menzes revealed that the annual total allowable catch of bigeye tuna, “a very important species for the Azores,” is expected to decrease.

 In this regard, the Regional Secretary called the Minister's attention for the fact that, when the quota for this species is distributed among Member States, he should advocate with the European Commission to pay "special attention" to the Outermost Regions "in terms of fishing practices and the use of sustainable fishing gear, namely pole-and-line fishing."

 "It is of public knowledge that the Azores have followed a path towards the defence of positive discrimination for Outermost Regions [for this type of fishing]," the government official said, adding that the aim is to "mitigate the impact of these cuts in these regions."

 "Negotiations are difficult, but it is absolutely fair that this happens," said Gui Menezes. 

 The creation of a Regional Advisory Council for the Outermost Regions was another issue discussed during the meeting. 

"We hope the National Government supports the process," the Regional Secretary said, adding that "the Region has fought hard in the past and this aspiration will finally take shape." 

 It should be noted that the Praia da Vitória City Council granted a space for the installation of the headquarters and secretariat of the Regional Advisory Council for the Outermost Regions (CC RUP).

 "This is an important step as far as advisory councils are now direct interlocutors with the European Commission in the defence of the Outermost Regions' fishing interests," said Gui Menezes.

 The Regional Secretary also highlighted issues such as the EMFF, "the quick installation of the MONICAP equipment, which is a monitoring system for fishing vessels, and inspections of fishing vessels.  

 Asked by journalists about the Regional Government's proposal to amend the basic law on national maritime spatial planning and management to be discussed at the Parliament on December 19, Gui Menezes said "the Azores have some expectation of obtaining shared management as intended.

 "The idea here is not to meddle with any aspect of sovereignty," he said, adding that, "in fact, we have a greater knowledge [of our sea] and, therefore, we are better qualified to hold more powers.


Official government press-releases presented in all foreign languages interfaces of the Azorean Government Portal (Portal do Governo dos Açores) are a sub-set of the government's official press-releases daily output and are chosen for translation and publication on the foreign language interfaces based on audience segmentation criteria. The entire collection of the Azorean government press-releases is available in portuguese, here, from the GACS Press Office site.

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