Belgium gets 40 million euros from European Maritime and Fisheries Fund

The European Commission makes 40.3 million euros available to promote a sustainable model for fisheries and aquaculture in Belgium. This was revealed after the Belgian component of the European Maritime, Fisheries and Aquaculture Fund (EMFF) was approved on Monday.

The European Maritime, Fisheries and Aquaculture Fund (EMFF) is the EU's maritime and fisheries policy fund for 2021-2027. In particular, the new EMFF supports small-scale coastal fisheries, young fishermen and outermost regions, and the promotion of sustainable aquaculture.

The Belgian programme has been allocated 68.3 million euros, of which the European Union will provide 40.3 million euros. The Commission has now given the green light for this.

"The Belgian fisheries sector will be encouraged to become more energy efficient and reduce its CO2 emissions"

"This new programme will support a wide range of innovative projects in Belgium and support the green and digital transition of the fisheries and aquaculture sector," says European Commissioner for Environment, Oceans and Fisheries Virginijus Sinkevicius.

"The Belgian fisheries sector will be encouraged to become more energy efficient and reduce its CO2 emissions, and will receive support to improve health, safety and working conditions on board and hire highly qualified workers," he adds.

Aquaculture - the growing and rearing of aquatic plants and animals - should become more adaptable to climate change and more professional thanks to the programme. "I am convinced that the programme will ensure the protection of the marine environment and conservation of fish stocks without losing sight of the profitability of the sector," Sinkevicius notes.

More than half of the programme (57 per cent) is for the sustainable conservation of the fisheries sector. This includes, for example, investments to meet the European landing obligation and to prevent discards of illegally caught fish, as well as investments in fishing boats and data collection.


© BELGA PHOTO Kurt Desplenter


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