A European Commission notice last week accused Poland of misreporting its cod catch in the eastern Baltic Sea.
‘The information at the Commission’s disposal through inspections in Poland by its inspectors during the period from January to May 2007 … (is) not compatible with (that) sent to the Commission by Poland,’ said the notice.
‘Basing itself on the information available to it, the Commission estimates that catches of that stock by Polish vessels are close to three times the amounts declared by Poland,’ it concluded.
The large discrepancies between the Polish catch figures and those collected by EU inspectors showed that Poland had already exhausted its entire 2007 cod quota of 10,794 tons for the Eastern Baltic. The Commission has consequently ordered Poland’s fishermen to stop trawling in this particular fishing zone.
Poland had already received several warnings to reduce its cod fishing in the region, but had failed to comply. Germany, Sweden and Lithuania have been issued similar warnings.
According to scientists, eastern Baltic cod has long been overfished and is on the verge of disappearing from the area altogether. Their recommendation is thus for an outright fishing ban.
European Commission Fisheries