The fishery sector is an integral part of the Baltic Sea coastal regions and their economies. Not all fish stocks are fished within natural limits, and certain commercially important species are severely overfished and outside safe biological limits. Existing national and EU fisheries management policies are apparently not effective enough to maintain or even rebuild a balanced stock situation. New fisheries management regulations are urgently needed. They must have a sound scientific and socio-economic basis to meet the needs of both the consumer and the environment and to preserve one of the most vulnerable marine resources. Alternative management schemes such as stocking and restocking of young fish are under discussion or in the trial stage.
On global scale, aquaculture continues to expand rapidly. However, the aquaculture sector in the BSR lags behind in this development and still has considerable growth potential. Currently, EU aquaculture output represents approximately 20.3 % of the total EU fisheries production and 2.6% of world aquaculture production (2007). Aquaculture therefore offers attractive regional development opportunities in the BSR, especially in regions affected by decline of capture fishing.
Therefore, 12 Partner from 7 countries will work together to integrate aquaculture and fisheries management towards a sustainable regional development in the BSR, applying an eco-system friendly approach. Specifically, the project will
- Analyse the prospects for an increased integration of stocking/restocking into fisheries management under the reformed CFP
- evaluate the feasibility of new management options in four transnational case studies in lagoons,
- evaluate and assess suitable stocking/restocking measures for different fish species
- develop strategies to utilize fish and aquaculture for regional economic and tourism development and to integrate aquaculture in a sustainable spatial development
- generate skills and implement professional education schemes for Baltic Sea specific aquaculture management
- promote the acceptance for farmed fish and aquaculture among BSR citizens