The European Parliament today voted in favour of a resolution calling for increased subsidies for the fishing sector to cover increased fuel costs. The Greens have criticised the call as wrongheaded, and welcome the fact that the Commission has publicly stated it will not propose any fuel subsidies for the fishing industry. After the vote, Green fisheries spokesperson Isabella Lövin MEP said:
"It is totally irresponsible to spend public money to maintain overcapacity in fishing power. Higher oil prices affect everyone, not only fishermen. Handing out more subsidies will prevent the European fleet from adopting more fuel-efficient technology and fishing methods. The call adopted today in this resolution is wrongheaded and we hope that the Commission and Council will ignore this demand.
"Increased subsidies threaten coastal communities in the long run, since they allow an increased fishing effort and further depletion of fish stocks, leading to decreasing catches. This sends the wrong signal before the upcoming reform of the Common Fisheries Policy."