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The study on Impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on EU fisheries and aquaculture analyses the effects of COVID-19 on the EU fisheries and aquaculture sectors from March to December 2020. It gives an overview of the main effects experienced at EU level and develops eight case studies (Spain, Denmark, France, Italy, Sweden, Greece, Portugal and Bulgaria). The research also provides conclusions and policy recommendations to strengthen the sector’s resilience to shocks, and to address current vulnerabilities in view of potential similar events.

During the presentation of the study, which took place on 27 October 2021, the authors proposed the following measures in order to strengthen the resilience of the sector in view of possible future shocks:
  • To designate fishers, farmers, processors and distribution workers as essential.
  • To establish exceptions to travel restrictions for temporary migrant workers and the enterprises that support the sector.
  • To explore the possibility of banking fishing quotas from one year to the next. To make up for lower catches in a given year, quotas could be exchanged from one year to another. The exact quota that can be “banked” should be defined based on sound scientific advice.
  • To increase transparency with a system that gives auctions and buyers a picture of the catch in terms of its volume and species in advance of its landing in a port.
  • To optimise the cash flow of transfers of support measures so to account for natural variations in production cycles due to, for example, seasonality.
  • To introduce a storage mechanisms when exceptional shocks hit the sector.
  • To implement promotional campaigns to support local fisheries and aquaculture products.
  • To strengthen databases and market intelligence
The presentation was followed by questions from the Members and a stimulating debate.
Further readingImpacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on EU fisheries and aquaculture 
Watch video of the event (with multilingual interpretation):
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