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Landing Obligation

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The Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) Basic Regulation has established an obligation to retain and land all fish that was previously discarded.

Different approaches and introduction timings have been adopted toward Pelagic (Midwater) and Demersal (Bottom-dwelling) species.

The Landing Obligation is introduced on a Regional Basis. For the UK, there is a North Sea region and also, encompassing all of Welsh waters, a North West Waters region. For each sea area, an Advisory Council (external link) exists, made up of stakeholders from the Member States who have a fisheries interest. They jointly recommend to the EU Commission on Plans for the introduction of the Landing Obligation in that region. Finally, the EU Commission have brought forward delegated regulations to give legal effect to the Obligation.

The Landing Obligation is introduced separately for the two main groupings of species in the North West Waters Region:

  • The Pelagic Landing Obligation (with effect from 1 January 2015)
  • The Demersal Landing Obligation (with effect from 1 January 2016).