Thus, it is “difficult” for the association to find reasons for contentment for Portugal, stemming from the last European Fisheries Council.

At the last meeting, the council determined the reduction of quotas “in almost all species important to our coastal fishing”, except horse mackerel and anchovy.

The sardine quota, in turn, remains open until the first half of next year, taking into account that its management is the responsibility of Portugal and Spain.

ANOP Cerco underlined that the claims that the country had “performed well” and that it was possible to “improve the fishing opportunities initially proposed” do not reassure or satisfy the sector.

In the document, the association also recalled that the latest scientific data for this species reveal an “exceptional reality” in Iberian waters.

“We fear that, if the current mainstream prevails against the social and economic activity of fishing, which is also led by the European Commission itself, we risk turning a well-deserved and justified optimism into yet another major disappointment for national fishermen”, regretted the producers.

ANOP Cerco also underlined that 2021 is already being conditioned by reductions in the possibility of catches, after a “terrible and adversity” year for the sector.