Fishing in the Skagerrak

The European Commission has welcomed the completion of negotiations on a new agreement between the European Union and Norway on reciprocal access to fishing in the waters of the Skagerrak.  This agreement, which supersedes the previous arrangement dating back from 1966 between Denmark, Sweden and Norway, will allow those countries to maintain reciprocal access for their vessels in each other’s waters within the defined area and ensure continuity of their fishing operations in this area.  Recent developments in international fisheries law and, with the introduction of the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea of 1982 and the UN Fish Stocks Agreement of 1995, Norway considered that the existing agreement was inconsistent with the provisions, particularly in regard to the provisions on control. the Agreement was not in harmony with the principles of normal Coastal State jurisdiction.  The new agreement, for which negotiations were finalised on 24 October 2013, allows for control measures in line with the principles of Coastal State jurisdiction whilst maintaining the same conditions as at present within the defined area of the Skagerrak and Kattegat.  Fisheries will be subject to management and conservation measures established either individually or jointly by the Parties, including control measures taken by the relevant Coastal State.