November 10, 2022
Italy and Lithuania adopt European Maritime, Fisheries and Aquaculture Fund
Italy and Lithuania have become the latest countries to adopt European Maritime, Fisheries, and Aquaculture Fund (EMFAF) programmes, and will receive €518.2 million (US$517 million) and €61.2 million (US$61.1 million) respectively in EU funding over the next six years.
The total financial allocation for the Italian programme is €987.2 million (US$986 million), while Lithuania's is €87.4 million (US$87.2 million). According to the European Commission, 49.8% of Italy's programme's allocation will be dedicated to sustainable fisheries; 32.8% will go to sustainable aquaculture, processing and marketing; 10% will be dedicated to sustainable blue economy in coastal, island and internal regions; and 1.4% will be invested in the strengthening of international ocean governance.
EU Commissioner for Environment, Oceans and Fisheries Virginijus Sinkevičius said the adoption of the EMFAF programme for Italy which will support sustainable investments in aquaculture and fisheries, and accelerate the green and digital transition of the sector.
"The programme will support the protection and restoration of aquatic biodiversity and ecosystems," Sinkevičius said. "It will also promote sustainable aquaculture and processing activities as well as stronger fisheries, aquaculture and processing sectors in Italy."
In regard to Lithuania's EMFAF programme, he said the funding would help modernise the country's fisheries and blue economy sectors in line with Europe's green and digital transitions.
"I am confident that the programme will boost sustainable productivity of aquaculture and diversify business developments in coastal areas," he added.
About 38.5% of the total EMFAF allocation will be dedicated to sustainable fisheries and the restoration and conservation of aquatic biological resources, 35% to aquaculture and 7.4% to processing and marketing.
The programme sets a target for aquaculture enterprises to use at least 25% of renewable energy by 2030, and organic aquaculture will be particularly supported with the aim to increase production by 39%.
To ensure effective implementation of the EU common fisheries policy, Lithuania will also dedicate around 18% of its EMFAF budget to scientific data collection and fisheries control and enforcement, in particular supporting digitalisation to improve traceability along the value chain.